“What goes around, comes around?” Why Verstappen’s win wasn’t payback for Miami

2024 Canadian GP interactive data

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Max Verstappen’s race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase thought they had payback for the race they lost in Miami when the Safety Car first appeared during yesterday’s race.

They had lost victory to Lando Norris when the Safety Car arrived with perfect timing for the McLaren driver, allowing him to make a pit stop and jump ahead of Verstappen into a lead he never lost.

Yesterday Norris was leading when the Safety Car appeared. He did not pit immediately, but Verstappen did, and claimed the lead from Norris on the following lap when the McLaren pitted.

“There you go – what goes around, comes around,” said Lambiase. “That’s Miami back.”

But while, from the outside, it appeared as though Norris had been unfortunate with the timing of the Safety Car, the driver revealed he could have made it into the pits. After the Safety Car was deployed he asked his race engineer Will Joseph whether he should “box or not?” and was told to “stay out.”

Lando Norris, Max Verstappen, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2024
Norris couldn’t keep Verstappen back after second stop
Did McLaren miss a second opportunity to get Norris into the lead later in the race? Their bold decision to stay out two laps longer than their rivals on intermediate tyres as the track dried paid off to an extent, helping Norris gain a place from George Russell. The McLaren emerged from the pits fractionally ahead of Verstappen, but with slick tyres on a still-wet part of the track he fishtailed as the Red Bull motored by into the lead.

Would Norris have been better off staying out just one lap longer instead of two? Red Bull team principal Christian Horner suggested this after the race. On his in-lap, Norris was still quicker than Verstappen in the first sector but lost time in the second. It’s likely he never quite had enough of a gap over Verstappen to be able to pit and keep the lead at this point, particularly as both his pit stops were quicker than Verstappen’s anyway.

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Kevin Magnussen, Haas, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2024
Haas went on the attack on wet tyres at the start
Ferrari’s striking decision to put Leclerc on hard tyres on lap 28 looked like a poor call at the time, but realistically this was just a gamble on the weather. All weekend showers had developed rapidly near the circuit and vexed strategists by intensifying or weakening as they reached the circuit, or missing it entirely. With Leclerc’s race already ruined by his engine problem, this was merely a ‘Hail Mary’ play by Ferrari rather than a tactical blunder.

Until that point, Haas had made the boldest tactical call of the race by starting their drivers on the full wet weather tyres while the rest of the field lined up on intermediates. However the ultimately gained little benefit from it, despite Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg rising to fourth and seventh respectively at one point.

Both eventually pitted for intermediate tyres, Hulkenberg leaving it as late as lap 12. But even with fresher intermediates than everyone else, both drivers felt they needed to pit again for new intermediates when the rain arrived – despite three other drivers choosing to remain on their original sets of worn intermediates. The upshot was both Haas drivers finished outside the top 10 despite the fun they had passing rivals from Ferrari, McLaren and Mercedes in the opening laps.

2024 Canadian Grand Prix lap chart

The positions of each driver on every lap. Click name to highlight, right-click to reset. Toggle drivers using controls below:

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2024 Canadian Grand Prix race chart

The gaps between each driver on every lap compared to the leader’s average lap time. Very large gaps omitted. Scroll to zoom, drag to pan and right-click to reset. Toggle drivers using controls below:

2024 Canadian Grand Prix lap times

All the lap times by the drivers (in seconds, very slow laps excluded). Scroll to zoom, drag to pan and toggle drivers using the control below:

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2024 Canadian Grand Prix fastest laps

Each driver’s fastest lap:

Rank # Driver Car Lap time Gap Avg. speed (kph) Lap no.
1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1’14.856 209.73 70
2 63 George Russell Mercedes 1’14.895 0.039 209.62 70
3 4 Lando Norris McLaren-Mercedes 1’15.558 0.702 207.78 67
4 1 Max Verstappen Red Bull-Honda RBPT 1’15.569 0.713 207.75 70
5 81 Oscar Piastri McLaren-Mercedes 1’16.247 1.391 205.9 65
6 14 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin-Mercedes 1’16.303 1.447 205.75 70
7 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas-Ferrari 1’16.499 1.643 205.23 68
8 27 Nico Hulkenberg Haas-Ferrari 1’16.683 1.827 204.73 67
9 18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin-Mercedes 1’16.762 1.906 204.52 70
10 31 Esteban Ocon Alpine-Renault 1’17.012 2.156 203.86 70
11 10 Pierre Gasly Alpine-Renault 1’17.013 2.157 203.86 70
12 3 Daniel Ricciardo RB-Honda RBPT 1’17.076 2.220 203.69 68
13 77 Valtteri Bottas Sauber-Ferrari 1’17.250 2.394 203.23 65
14 22 Yuki Tsunoda RB-Honda RBPT 1’17.309 2.453 203.08 70
15 24 Zhou Guanyu Sauber-Ferrari 1’17.325 2.469 203.03 68
16 11 Sergio Perez Red Bull-Honda RBPT 1’18.819 3.963 199.19 51
17 55 Carlos Sainz Jnr Ferrari 1’18.957 4.101 198.84 51
18 23 Alexander Albon Williams-Mercedes 1’19.359 4.503 197.83 51
19 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1’26.012 11.156 182.53 39
20 2 Logan Sargeant Williams-Mercedes 1’26.484 11.628 181.53 19

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2024 Canadian Grand Prix tyre strategies

The tyre strategies for each driver:

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2024 Canadian Grand Prix pit stop times

How long each driver’s pit stops took:

Rank # Driver Team Complete stop time (s) Gap to best (s) Stop no. Lap no.
1 4 Lando Norris McLaren 23.423 1 26
2 81 Oscar Piastri McLaren 23.476 0.053 2 44
3 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 23.762 0.339 1 25
4 3 Daniel Ricciardo RB 23.86 0.437 2 43
5 81 Oscar Piastri McLaren 23.977 0.554 1 25
6 4 Lando Norris McLaren 23.983 0.56 2 47
7 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 24.031 0.608 1 25
8 63 George Russell Mercedes 24.044 0.621 1 25
9 55 Carlos Sainz Jnr Ferrari 24.125 0.702 2 43
10 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 24.226 0.803 2 43
11 27 Nico Hulkenberg Haas 24.233 0.81 1 12
12 1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 24.246 0.823 2 45
13 18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 24.284 0.861 1 25
14 1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 24.306 0.883 1 25
15 14 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 24.346 0.923 2 44
16 10 Pierre Gasly Alpine 24.408 0.985 2 40
17 11 Sergio Perez Red Bull 24.423 1 2 43
18 31 Esteban Ocon Alpine 24.495 1.072 1 44
19 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 24.629 1.206 3 31
20 27 Nico Hulkenberg Haas 24.668 1.245 2 25
21 27 Nico Hulkenberg Haas 24.751 1.328 3 44
22 23 Alexander Albon Williams 24.753 1.33 1 25
23 23 Alexander Albon Williams 24.804 1.381 2 44
24 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas 24.833 1.41 3 41
25 10 Pierre Gasly Alpine 24.911 1.488 1 25
26 77 Valtteri Bottas Sauber 24.929 1.506 1 42
27 18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 25.025 1.602 2 44
28 63 George Russell Mercedes 25.431 2.008 2 45
29 22 Yuki Tsunoda RB 25.569 2.146 1 44
30 24 Zhou Guanyu Sauber 25.598 2.175 1 24
31 14 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 25.788 2.365 1 25
32 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas 26.794 3.371 2 25
33 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas 26.845 3.422 4 54
34 55 Carlos Sainz Jnr Ferrari 27.626 4.203 1 25
35 63 George Russell Mercedes 28.157 4.734 3 54
36 24 Zhou Guanyu Sauber 28.375 4.952 3 52
37 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 28.817 5.394 3 54
38 3 Daniel Ricciardo RB 30.298 6.875 1 26
39 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas 30.472 7.049 1 7
40 11 Sergio Perez Red Bull 33.762 10.339 1 25
41 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 47.186 23.763 2 28

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2024 Canadian Grand Prix

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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4 comments on ““What goes around, comes around?” Why Verstappen’s win wasn’t payback for Miami”

  1. Perez’s race was shockingly awful. He was some way off even Alonso’s pace

    It’s amazing he went one up from Imola and Monaco.

    1. Perez was never going to get a good setup for himself.

      As for RBR, they won because they have the best car/team. The tires had a harder time influencing the final outcome of the race because of the mixed conditions.

      1. Define the “best car”… the maclaren was faster in the wet by some margin and the Merc was faster in the dry.
        It reaaly seems the driver here that made the difference.. give credit where credit due.

        1. When you are at the front leading a race, you control the pace, and thus, your real pace is only required when the guy behind you is faster than you, significantly. So we don’t actually know the pace of the RBR car. But RBR did a great job setting it up and executing during the race.

          And yes, the reason why Max won, was because the Pirelli slick tires could not prove deterministic enough to shape the overall pace of the leaders. If anything Max drove kind of sloppy and is having a difficult time reacting to the change in tire compounds which is inhibiting Red Bull’s potential.

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