Bottas held the lead from the start from Verstappen for the majority of the race, but had to pass Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc for victory in the closing stages, as Leclerc attempted to stay out on the intermediate tyres that he’d started on.
Bottas won by over 14s from Verstappen with fastest lap, while Sergio Perez finished third in the second Red Bull. Leclerc finished fourth from Hamilton, the latter charging up from 11th to third, but was angry that his team called him in for a stop when he wanted to stay out until the end.
2021 Turkish Grand Prix race results
How the Turkish Grand Prix unfolded
The race started in wet conditions, with the teams all using intermediate tyres. From his inherited pole position, Bottas led Verstappen and Leclerc, as Pierre Gasly’s AlphaTauri clipped the Alpine of Fernando Alonso into a spin at Turn 1 – for which Gasly received a 5s penalty.
Bottas pulled away in the opening stages from Verstappen, Leclerc and Perez.
From 11th on the grid after his penalty for an engine change, Hamilton gained spots from Alonso’s spin and Sebastian Vettel’s Aston Martin early on, then took seven laps to find a way past Yuki Tsunoda’s AlphaTauri. He made short work of the second Aston of Lance Stroll and Lando Norris’s McLaren, rising into the top six by the end of lap 10.
Hamilton took fifth from Gasly on lap 14, but his charging drive then stalled out as his tyres became worn and he began to lose time to the leaders. He lost vital seconds when he was carved up while lapping the Haas of Nikita Mazepin, which delayed him catching Perez.
Hamilton briefly got ahead of Perez at the end of lap 34, but the Mexican clung on – despite being forced into the pitlane entry.
Verstappen pitted on lap 37, followed in by Bottas and Perez a lap later. Leclerc now led but suffered a big lockup at Turn 12, while Hamilton also stayed out – turning down repeatedly suggestions from the team to pit – and rose to fourth.
Bottas caught Leclerc with 12 laps remaining and retook the lead on lap 47. Leclerc then gave up on his staying-out gamble and dropped to fourth, just ahead of Perez.
Hamilton pitted from third with seven laps to go, dropping him to fifth. Perez passed Leclerc for third, while Hamilton – who sounded angry about giving up his track position and believed he could’ve gone to the end – struggled on his new rubber.
Hamilton had to hold off Gasly for fifth in the closing stages, ahead of Norris. The result means that Hamilton slips to six points behind Verstappen.
From the back of the grid after an engine change grid penalty, Carlos Sainz dragged his Ferrari into the top 10 by lap 14 with a bold move on Vettel. A slow pitstop didn’t help him and he had to battle past Esteban Ocon to finish eighth.
Ocon ran a non-stop race, but slipped back to 10th having been passed by Stroll in the last few laps.
Vettel tried an overambitious gamble on slicks, which saw him slide off the track a number of times and he even half-spun coming into the pits to take more inters.
2021 Formula 1 Turkish Grand Prix fastest laps
2021 Formula 1 Turkish Grand Prix tyre history