In what can only be described as a nightmare weekend for Red Bull Racing, Max Verstappen found himself battling an “undriveable” car during the Singapore Formula 1 qualifying session. The Marina Bay circuit had proven to be a thorn in the side of the Red Bull team, with neither Verstappen nor his teammate, Sergio Perez, making it into Q3 on Saturday.
Verstappen, usually a formidable force on the track, could only manage an 11th-place finish in his car, while Perez languished in 13th. The frustration was palpable as Verstappen explained that changes made to the car after a “not too bad” FP3 session had ultimately derailed his qualifying challenge.
When asked by Sky F1 if the qualifying outcome was worse than expected, Verstappen candidly responded, “Yeah, for sure. I knew that it was already going to be tough to secure pole position, but what we experienced today was beyond my expectations.”
The struggles for Red Bull had been apparent throughout the weekend. Verstappen continued, “I think FP3 was not too bad, but then we tried a few more things on the car for qualifying where it tipped it over to the car being undriveable again, where the car was massively bottoming out in the braking zones, and every time I wanted to brake deep and hard, my front wheels were getting unloaded.”
It was a shocking experience for Verstappen, who elaborated, “So, like I said on the radio, it was just a shocking experience because also just trying to lean on the car in low speed, just constantly no speed, no traction. Just really difficult to drive.”
Verstappen, known for his ability to charge through the field from low grid positions, admitted that he doesn’t have a car capable of fighting for a podium finish on Sunday. He recalled his remarkable performance in Saudi Arabia, where he climbed from 15th to finish second, but this time, the odds seemed stacked against him.
“No, for sure not,” he replied when asked if he had any hopes of a podium finish in the grand prix. “I think anyway here is much less about actually having a good race car. It’s a bit like Monaco. You put it all on qualifying and even with tire degradation, it’s quite difficult for anyone to really pass you because the tire wear is not that high.”
Verstappen’s outlook for the race was cautious, “So, it will be a long, tough afternoon. So, hopefully not too many safety cars and the race will be quite short.”
In addition to his on-track struggles, Verstappen also faces investigations for potential impeding infractions during the qualifying segments. However, amidst the chaos of the evening, Verstappen seemed unfazed by the prospect of a grid drop, stating, “We’ll speak to the stewards. Honestly, at this point, it was just so messy that it doesn’t matter if we start from P11, P15, or last.”
He concluded with a focus on the bigger picture, “At this point, it’s just more important we understand why it was so bad. That will be way more important than trying to score a couple of points this weekend.”
In the high-stakes world of Formula 1, every twist and turn on the track can make or break a championship campaign. For Red Bull Racing, the Singapore Grand Prix has been a harsh reminder that even the best teams can encounter the most challenging of weekends.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Verstappen Singapore Qualifying
Q: What went wrong for Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing in the Singapore F1 qualifying?
A: Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing faced an uphill battle in the Singapore Formula 1 qualifying due to an “undriveable” car. Changes made to the car after a promising FP3 session resulted in the car bottoming out in braking zones and a lack of traction. This unexpected struggle left Verstappen in 11th place, far from his usual front-row contention.
Q: Did Max Verstappen have any hopes of a podium finish in the Singapore Grand Prix?
A: Verstappen expressed doubts about his chances of a podium finish in the Singapore Grand Prix. The Marina Bay circuit, much like Monaco, places a heavy emphasis on qualifying, making it challenging for drivers to overtake during the race. Verstappen acknowledged that a podium would be a tall order with his current car’s performance.
Q: What investigations does Max Verstappen face after the qualifying session?
A: Max Verstappen faces investigations for potential impeding infractions in the first two segments of the qualifying session. However, amid the chaotic evening, Verstappen seemed unconcerned about a possible grid drop, emphasizing that understanding why the car performed poorly was more crucial at this point.
Q: How has Red Bull Racing’s weekend at the Singapore Grand Prix been described?
A: Red Bull Racing’s weekend at the Singapore Grand Prix has been described as a “nightmare.” Both Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez failed to make it into Q3 during qualifying, with Verstappen deeming his car “undriveable.” The team struggled with setup changes that adversely affected their performance throughout the weekend.
More about Verstappen Singapore Qualifying
- Singapore Grand Prix Official Website: For official race information and updates.
- Formula 1 Official Website: For comprehensive coverage of Formula 1 events and news.
- Red Bull Racing Team: The official page for Red Bull Racing, offering insights into their performance and updates.
- Max Verstappen’s Profile: Max Verstappen’s official Formula 1 profile with career statistics and updates.
- Marina Bay Circuit: Information about the Marina Bay Circuit, host of the Singapore Grand Prix.
- Sky Sports F1: For in-depth analysis and interviews related to Formula 1.