Red Bull made an announcement this week regarding a special event at the renowned track, Red Bull Nordschleife, where four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel will be joining Daniel Ricciardo. The event will take place in September, featuring Vettel driving the 2011 RB7 car, which he used to secure the championship that year, while Ricciardo will be behind the wheel of an RB8 from the following season. This event marks the return of F1 machinery to the venue after a decade.
Max Verstappen, speaking before the Canadian Grand Prix, revealed that the possibility of his participation in the event was briefly discussed with Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko but was ultimately dismissed. Verstappen expressed his desire to be a part of it, but Marko was aware that Verstappen would push the limits, leading to the decision against his participation. Verstappen admitted, “I would have loved to do it.”
Although Verstappen holds considerable influence within Red Bull, he felt it was unnecessary to pursue the matter further, as he did not want to create unnecessary complications. He recalled Marko’s immediate response at the discussion table, saying, “‘No, no, no, you’re not doing that!'”
While the demonstration runs by Vettel and Ricciardo are purely for show, Verstappen acknowledged that the temptation to attempt a lap record would have been strong. The current lap record at the Nordschleife is held by Timo Bernhard, who achieved a time of 5m19.55s in a Porsche 919 Hybrid Evo in 2018. Verstappen confessed with a smile, “I would have definitely given it a go,” but mentioned the need for appropriate tires, which are not permitted due to the regulations surrounding demo runs.
Verstappen also shared his perspective on the risks associated with driving at the Nordschleife in an older car, comparing it to the dangers present at some of the current F1 circuits. He noted, “It’s also risky to drive here,” emphasizing that hitting a barrier is not part of the plan. Nevertheless, he expressed hope that one day he would have the opportunity to experience it. When asked which car he would prefer to drive, Verstappen replied, “Ideally, it would have been amazing in an F1 car. But if that’s not allowed, then perhaps one day in a GT3 car.”
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Nordschleife F1 run
Can Max Verstappen participate in Red Bull’s Nordschleife F1 run?
No, Max Verstappen was not allowed to join the event. Despite his interest and willingness, Red Bull’s motorsport advisor, Helmut Marko, ruled out Verstappen’s participation due to concerns about pushing the limits.
Why did Max Verstappen accept the decision?
Verstappen chose not to pursue the matter further to avoid unnecessary complications. He respected the decision made by Helmut Marko and did not want to create any issues within the team.
Would Max Verstappen have attempted a lap record at the Nordschleife?
Verstappen expressed his desire to go for a lap record if given the chance. However, the demo runs at the event required specific tires that are not permitted under the regulations, making it impossible for him to attempt a record-breaking lap.
Is driving at the Nordschleife more dangerous than F1 circuits?
Verstappen believes that driving at the Nordschleife carries a similar level of risk compared to some current F1 circuits. He acknowledged the potential dangers but clarified that hitting a barrier is not part of the plan during races.
What car would Max Verstappen prefer to drive at the Nordschleife?
Ideally, Verstappen would have loved to drive an F1 car at the Nordschleife. However, if that’s not allowed, he expressed interest in experiencing it in a GT3 car at some point in the future.