Formula 1: in Miami, the ruthless Max Verstappen wins in an atmosphere of glitter

In Miami, where 70% of the population is Hispanic, the crowd hoped, Sunday, May 7, the victory of a Latin American pilot

Formula 1: in Miami, the ruthless Max Verstappen wins in an atmosphere of glitter

In Miami, where 70% of the population is Hispanic, the crowd hoped, Sunday, May 7, the victory of a Latin American pilot. But the Mexican Sergio Pérez could not cope with the fantastic ride of Max Verstappen. The Dutchman won for the second consecutive year at the Miami Grand Prix, a new flashy meeting on the Formula 1 calendar.

The day before, Pérez had yet achieved the third pole position of his career, the second of the season. When "Max", the double world champion, had taken an unusual ninth position, penalized by Charles Leclerc's accident which put an early end to qualification.

Regardless of this slight incident, Verstappen is the strongest. And the Red Bull duo continue to outrageously dominate the start of the season: five wins and four one-two finishes in five races. The advantage remains in favor of the defending champion, who has three victories against two for his comrade. Max Verstappen consolidates his first place in the world championship, now fourteen points ahead (119 points against 105).

If Ferrari is still behind – Carlos Sainz and Leclerc, disappointing 5th and 7th – only Fernando Alonso resists a little. The Spaniard finished on the podium and consolidates his 3rd place in the championship with 75 points scored. The three-color Alpine team got an interesting rebound after several difficult races: Pierre Gasly finished 8th and Esteban Ocon, 9th.

In Florida, the country's third-most Latino state (4.3 million people), Sergio Perez has had some real Checo! Checo! Checo! chanted the crowd repeatedly, waving Mexican flags. Despite his "fantastic start to the season", by his boss's own admission, the Mexican still seems a notch below Max Verstappen, imperturbable in the midst of this glitter-filled environment, the opposite of his austere personality.

Parade of stars

Sixth at the finish, Lewis Hamilton is like a fish in water in this atmosphere. For the Brit, life is a permanent fashion show. We saw him come and go for four days, wearing different and always extravagant outfits. Barely a few minutes from the start, the seven-time world champion was not bothered by an unusual presentation of each pilot – individually – to the rhythm of a symphony orchestra and a dizzying sound system.

In three days, American stars also followed one another under the Sunshine State sun: billionaires Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, rappers A$AP Rocky, Will.I.Am and Queen Latifah, actors Vin Diesel and Tom Cruise or even sportswomen like Venus and Serena Williams…

Around the Hard Rock Stadium, the organizers have raised a circuit and spectacular facilities from the ground. "You Americans have so much experience and know-how in organizing sporting events," a Lewis Hamilton fan said in a British accent to a local spectator.

The Miami Grand Prix is ​​a kind of Disneyland. First for team staff and VIP guests, who took advantage of the many street food stands, arcade terminals and entertainment of all kinds. “Everyone is very excited to be here. We are amazed by the gigantism, "says an Alpine employee. "Every time I'm here, I think I'm in Bad Boys. I entered the paddock at the same time as Vin Diesel, it's cool", marvels the French pilot Esteban Ocon.

Thursday, the usual sportsmen of the place - the US footballers of the Dolphins - had animated a course of speed and agility for the pilots. The tricolor Pierre Gasly had distinguished himself by winning the exercise.


The privileged spectators, who spent for the most part between 1,000 and 2,000 dollars for their ticket, are not forgotten. Like last year, the organizers have planned a "fake" marina with a handful of yachts that rest on a turquoise blue lino, a beach club with swimming pools and DJ, gondolas that allow you to see the circuit from above...

Owner of the Miami Dolphins franchise, billionaire Stephen Ross rubs his hands hosting this show. Before landing his ten-year contract with Formula One, he faced opposition from residents of Miami Gardens, a predominantly African-American community of 113,000, located 25 km north of the "Magic City". .

To convince those who will only scratch the surface of the VIP event held next door to them, the Grand Prix organizers have pledged to carry out social programs and support the local economy. A study concluded that the local economy would have been boosted by $350,000 million in 2022, of which $150 million was spent by tourists. Certainly more in Miami than in the territory of the locality of Miami Gardens itself.

In Miami, Formula 1 cultivated its image and reaped profits. In a few months, in November, the third US Grand Prix of the season is scheduled in Las Vegas. A step that promises even more excess.