Max Verstappen won out over Lewis Hamilton in a tense dash to the line in Austin, though Mick Schumacher almost played a major role.
Hamilton was able to jump pole-sitter Verstappen to take the lead of the United States Grand Prix into Turn 1, though Red Bull got Verstappen back ahead on strategy through a successful undercut.
With both drivers on a two-stopper, Hamilton went longer to give himself a tyre advantage over Verstappen for the final stint, but despite successfully reeling the Dutchman in with a few laps to go, Hamilton was unable to get close enough to attempt a pass on his title rival.
The end result was Verstappen taking the win, and so extending his lead over Hamilton in the Drivers’ standings to 12 points.
Despite Hamilton’s late approach Verstappen always looked in control, though he could have done without the distraction of Schumacher who took a fair chunk of time to respond to blue flags and pull his Haas off the racing line to allow the leading pair through.
So that proved to be the height of the stress for Horner in those closing laps.
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“Mick on the last lap cost us, but he also gave us DRS – he nearly gave me a heart attack as well,” Horner told Sky F1.
“But Max just managed to keep enough in hand and that was a classy, classy drive, a crucial drive.
“I think I’ve aged about 25 years in that race. I really didn’t think we could hang on at the end there because it was such a long stint and we were out of tyres after I last spoke to you – I didn’t want to give that away.
“For him to protect the tyres, hang in there and be quick where he needed to be, he deserves that victory today.”
Red Bull were overjoyed to take pole at the Circuit of The Americas, ending Mercedes’ stranglehold on the top grid spot here.
So to now transform that into victory represents a huge achievement for Red Bull.
“They all count, every single point,” Horner stated.
“But it’s big for us to beat Mercedes here, get the pole – the first pole other than a Merc for seven years – and get that win against Lewis here, who we know is a phenomenal driver around here. That’s a big win for us.”