Max Verstappen made a dream start to the 2023 campaign as he romped to victory during the Bahrain Grand Prix, leading home team mate Sergio Perez in an emphatic Red Bull one-two finish.

    Verstappen held P1 from lights out to the chequered flag in Sakhir to kick off his title defence – and quest for a third drivers’ crown – with maximum points, crossing the line more than 10 seconds clear of Perez.

    READ MORE: Verstappen leads 1-2 in Bahrain season opener as Leclerc retires and Alonso takes final podium place in style

    In a blow for their rivals, Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc ground to a halt during the closing stages, costing the Monegasque a probable podium finish and a hatful of championship points.

    That opened the door for Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso to opportunistically snatch a rostrum result from the other Ferrari of Carlos Sainz, with Lewis Hamilton completing the top five positions in his Mercedes.

    There was drama at the start as Lance Stroll ran into the back of team mate Alonso and Nico Hulkenberg clipped Esteban Ocon, while Oscar Piastri was an early retiree on his F1 debut amid technical trouble.

    Hit go in the video player above to watch highlights from the 2023 season opener.