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Verstappen is taken back to the pits after crashing during the Sakhir Formula One Grand Prix

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Leclerc and Verstappen crash out in Sakhir GP’s opening lap

MANAMA, Bahrain, Dec 6 – Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen crashed out of Sunday’s Sakhir Formula One Grand Prix on the opening lap, just one week after Romain Grosjean’s escape from a blazing car at the Bahrain GP.

Kimi Raikkonen had already spun in his Alfa Romeo at Turn Three when, in an aggressive move, Ferrari’s Leclerc tried to push up the inside of Racing Point’s Sergio Perez at Turn Four.

Mexican Perez and Leclerc collided and forced Verstappen in his Red Bull to take evasive action that saw him bounce off the circuit and go off into the steel trackside barriers.

Leclerc also careered off the track alongside the Dutchman while Perez spun and continued, taking an early pit-stop as the race was slowed for safety car conditions.

None of the drivers were injured.

The early crash gifted the Mercedes duo George Russell and Valtteri Bottas, who had started with a front-row lockout, with a perfect opportunity to control the race after the exits of the Ferrari and Red Bull drivers.

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