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Max Verstappen navigates chaotic race in treacherous conditions to win third consecutive Canadian Grand Prix

By Ben Church, CNN

(CNN) — Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won the the Canadian Grand Prix on Sunday – his third successive triumph in Montreal – after the three-time world champion expertly navigated an unpredictable race at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

The Dutchman had started second on the grid and avoided trouble amid changing weather conditions to get back to winning ways – Verstappen has now won six out of the nine races this season.

Speaking after the race, the 26-year-old praised his team for getting the big decisions right in one of the more challenging wins for the Dutchman this season.

“I do think it was a very good team effort today,” Verstappen said in his post-race interview. “We made the right calls, we remained calm when it was sometimes a little bit hectic.

“At times in the race we didn’t look the quickest but we were there at the right time so I’m very happy with that.”

McLaren’s Lando Norris, who had pushed Verstappen for the win, finished second  with Mercedes’ George Russell in third.

Russell had started the race in pole and kept hold of the lead after a wet start, with cars slipping all over the treacherous track.

But as conditions dried, Norris took his chance to overtake both Verstappen and Russell to take the lead.

Then came a series of pit challenges, safety cars and more rain which allowed Verstappen to hit the front and hold on for the 60th win of his career – he’s now 56 points clear at the top of the driver’s championship.

‘We should have won today’

Norris, though, was left rueing a missed opportunity and pointed to his team’s poor decision making as one reason.

Norris had established a healthy lead earlier in the race but McLaren’s hesitation around pitting during the first safety car saw all of his good work undone.

He was then left with too much distance to make up and was left hoping Verstappen and Red Bull would slip up. Once again, the Dutchman and his team kept their nerve.

“We should have won today, simple as that,” a clearly frustrated Norris told reporters after the race.

“We didn’t do a good enough job as a team to box when we should have done and not get stuck behind the safety car.

“So I don’t think it was a lucky or unlucky kind of thing. This was just making a wrong call.”

The season continues at the Spanish Grand Prix on June 23, with Verstappen looking to further tighten his grip on the world title.

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