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WATCH: Verstappen steams into the lead from third in thrilling start to the Emilia Romagna GP

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Rain started falling at the Imola circuit less than an hour before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, and the slippery conditions only added to the drama when the race got under way.

The majority of the drivers opted for intermediate tyres, with only Alpine's Esteban Ocon, AlphaTauri's Pierre Gasly and the Haas pair of Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin fitting full wets.

When the lights went out Max Verstappen got a superb launch off the line from third and shot ahead of his Red Bull team mate Sergio Perez in second, and then pulled alongside polesitter Lewis Hamilton, taking the racing line into the chicane at Tamburello to take the lead, while Hamilton was left bouncing over the kerbs as he was forced to settle for second place.

Behind the leaders several drivers were struggling for grip on the slippery track, with Nicholas Latifi one of those sliding off the track. He rejoined but made contact with Mazepin and hit the wall hard, just after the Acque Minerale corner. He was immediately out of the race, and the hit triggered the Safety Car to allow the marshals to recover his damaged Williams.

Hit play on the video above to see the action from the start of the race, and tap here to follow the latest from Imola in our Grand Prix live blog.

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