Bottas produced his best drive of the season as he claimed a commanding 10th victory of his career to finish nearly 15 seconds clear of Red Bull’s Verstappen, who moved back into the lead of the world championship.
It marked a rare moment of joy for Bottas in what has been a tricky season for the Finn, who will move to Alfa Romeo next season after losing his Mercedes seat to George Russell for 2022. It marked his first win since last year’s Russian Grand Prix over 12 months ago.
Verstappen’s title rival Hamilton fought back from his 10-place engine penalty to take fifth, but was left angered by Mercedes decision to pit him seven laps from the end as he dropped from third.
Hamilton was convinced he could go to the end of the race without stopping but Mercedes overruled their driver by calling him in for a fresh set of intermediates in the closing stages.
Hamilton eventually obliged and stopped as he lost two positions while stationary in the pits and suffered with graining in the last few laps, preventing him from charging back through.
The result means Verstappen has enjoyed an eight-point swing in his favour to move into a six-point advantage over Hamilton heading into the final six races of the season.
Sergio Perez benefitted from stopping earlier than Hamilton and Charles Leclerc as he charged past the Ferrari driver in the closing stages to claim third and his first podium since the French Grand Prix in June.
Like Hamilton, erstwhile race-leader Leclerc had hoped to go to the end without stopping for a new set of intermediates but had to come in when his pace dropped off massively in the last 10 laps, during which time he was caught and passed by Bottas.
Leclerc took fourth ahead of Hamilton and Pierre Gasly, who finished sixth for AlphaTauri despite being hit with a rather harsh five-second time penalty for spinning Fernando Alonso’s Alpine around at the start.