A brilliant performance by Max Verstappen catapulted him from pole position to his third win of the 2019 season in the Brazilian Grand Prix.
But all eyes were on the Ferraris of Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel who collided dramatically with just six laps to go.
The split-second contact sent Leclerc and Vettel limping into red-faced retirement.
Red Bull’s Alex Albon was looking good to take his first F1 podium.
But with two laps to go when the race restarted, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton tagged Albon, leaving the Thai driver to finish P14.
Rosso’s Pierre Gasly meanwhile was able to hold off Hamilton in a drag race to the finish line to claim his first podium in Formula 1, with the stewards later handing Hamilton a five-second penalty for his part in the Albon incident.
“It’s the best day of my life,” he said.
“As a kid, you dream of being in F1 and when it happens, it becomes the best day of your life. Then you dream of your first podium.
“When I came back to Toro Rosso, I just kept working on myself, I tried to push the team as much as much as I could, and I’ve been careful to make the best of all my opportunities.
“Today just came to us, we had a strong race before that. All weekend the car has felt good and I was controlling the gap to the guys behind.
“When started to battle first with the Ferrari, I thought okay, this looks similar to Bahrain 2018 when we took P4. Then it was quite an intense finish and incredible to get my first podium in F1.”
In the aftermath of the race, Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto said he would reserve judgement on who was to blame for the incident.
It was with a lump in his throat that Leclerc admitted: “Everything happened very quick”.
“From my side I overtook in Turn 1, I enjoyed this overtake – and then in Turn 3 I [was] too close because I was aware that Seb would try again, and he did – he went round the outside where there was little space,” added the 22-year-old.
“And I left the space, which he took, and then towards the end of the straight he started to squeeze me a little bit to the inside and we were very close… and as soon as he went to the inside we touched and I had a puncture.
“I haven’t seen Seb yet but I’m pretty sure we are mature enough to put that behind us at the moment we feel extremely sorry for the team, this is the end result: both of the cars didn’t finish and that’s very disappointing. For the future we’ll put that behind us and continue to work together.”
No word from Aussie Daniel Ricciardo or the Renault camp.
The next and final race for the season is the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on December 1.
|1||33||RED BULL RACING HONDA||71||1:33:14.678||25|
|2||10||SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO HONDA||71||+6.077s||18|
|5||7||ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI||71||+9.452s||10|
|6||99||ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI||71||+10.201s||8|
|9||11||RACING POINT BWT MERCEDES||71||+11.529s||2|
|10||26||SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO HONDA||71||+11.931s||1|
|14||23||RED BULL RACING HONDA||71||+14.927s||0|
|16||88||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||70||+1 lap||0|
|19||18||RACING POINT BWT MERCEDES||65||DNF||0|
* Provisional results
Note – Hulkenberg received a post-race, 5-second time penalty for overtaking under safety-car conditions.
CHECKOUT: Ricciardo winds it off the clock