Lewis Hamilton wins Qatar GP, cuts Verstappen's lead to eight points



Lewis Hamilton, along with his Mercedes team, registered a remarkable performance to win the inaugural Qatar GP at the Losail International Circuit on Sunday and step up the pressure on Red Bull's Max Verstappen in this season's title race.

Hamilton finished ahead of Verstappen, who started the race in seventh following five-place grid penalty for ignoring yellow flags during the qualifying session on Saturday.

Two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso secured a first podium finish since 2014, and his 98th overall, coming in third ahead of Red Bull's Sergio Perez.

After the race, Hamilton expressed his gratitude to his team for his dominant display and optimism ahead of the final two races.

"I always like to give a thanks to all the people that came out today. Thanks you all for coming. It was pretty straightforward; it was pretty lonely at the front. It was a solid job from the team. I'm really grateful for these points, it's been a hell of a year; back-to-back wins is amazing," Hamilton said.

"The feeling's good. I feel fit, fitter than ever. Recovery's been great, so, yeah, bring on the next two."

Victory for Hamilton sees him cut Verstappen's lead atop the Formula 1 standings to eight points with just two races remaining. The 36-year-old British driver is gunning for a record-breaking eighth world championship.

The next stop in the calendar is Jeddah where the inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix will be held on December 3-5.