Verstappen’s current reign over Formula 1 often brings attention to the radio chats he shares with his engineer during races.
Lambiase, Verstappen’s engineer, had already gained fame for his straight-talking manner that keeps Verstappen in line, even before Red Bull’s recent successes amplified their team radio communications. The rapport between them was evident during the unexpected victory at Silverstone in the 70th Anniversary race in 2020.
Before joining Red Bull in 2015, Lambiase served as a race engineer for Paul di Resta and Sergio Perez at the then-named Force India. He started his F1 career in 2005 with the team’s former entity, Jordan, and ascended to the position of head of race engineer at Red Bull the previous summer.
In an exclusive chat with F1 Flow.com, Horner revealed how Vettel, formerly guided by Guillaume ‘Rocky’ Rocquelin, whose radio conversations with the German racer gained popularity, played a pivotal role in Lambiase’s recruitment to Red Bull.
“GP has shown remarkable growth,” Horner remarked about Lambiase. “He was initially hired as a replacement for Rocky, who was transitioning to the position of head of race engineering – a role that GP currently holds.
He underwent a rigorous procedure, which included an extensive interview with Sebastian, to succeed Rocky as Vettel’s race engineer.
Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull Racing talks with his engineer Guillaume Rocquelin on the grid.
Photo by: Andre Vor / Sutton Images
Lambiase joined the team with the intention to work with Sebastian Vettel, but ended up working with Daniil Kvyat when Vettel unexpectedly moved to Ferrari.
With Kvyat, he did an outstanding job. When Max ascended to the primary position, the two quickly developed a strong connection that has been tremendously fruitful,” Horner added.
Horner maintains that Red Bull has “definitely” given Lambiase the authority to be assertive with Verstappen when needed, in a dynamic he describes as “bluntly honest”.
“It’s his role, he’s the conduit between the driver and the track,” Horner expanded. “Max is a formidable character to handle, and GP matches him with his own fiery temperament.
Their interaction often resembles a long-time married couple squabbling over what to watch on TV, but there’s genuine respect, trust, and a connection between them.”
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Verstappen-Lambiase dynamic
Who is Max Verstappen’s race engineer?
Gianpiero Lambiase is Max Verstappen’s race engineer. He is known for his straight-talking approach and has built a strong rapport with Verstappen.
What is the unique dynamic between Verstappen and his race engineer Lambiase?
The dynamic between Verstappen and Lambiase is often described as similar to an “old married couple”. While they may have spirited exchanges, there is a mutual respect and trust between them.
How did Sebastian Vettel influence Lambiase’s recruitment to Red Bull?
Sebastian Vettel, who was previously engineered by Guillaume ‘Rocky’ Rocquelin, played a key role in ensuring Lambiase was recruited by Red Bull. Lambiase was interviewed extensively by Vettel as part of a rigorous selection process.
What role did Lambiase initially join Red Bull for?
Lambiase initially joined Red Bull in 2015 to be the race engineer for Sebastian Vettel. However, when Vettel unexpectedly moved to Ferrari, he ended up working with Daniil Kvyat and later with Max Verstappen.
What has been the outcome of the Verstappen-Lambiase partnership?
The partnership between Verstappen and Lambiase has been highly successful, contributing to Verstappen’s domination in recent Formula 1 races. Their rapport has become a significant feature of in-race communications.