Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Circuit de Catalunya, 2016

Verstappen needs “a few weekends” to get comfortable

2016 Spanish Grand Prix

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Max Verstappen says it will take him a few more race weekends to be completely comfortable after moving to Red Bull.

The new Red Bull driver, who has replaced Daniil Kvyat this weekend, ended the first day of practice less than two-tenths of a second slower than new team mate Daniel Ricciardo.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Circuit de Catalunya, 2016
Verstappen was eighth-quickest overall
“I’m happy,” Verstappen said after practice, “for a first day you can’t complain”.

Gaining as much mileage as possible is Verstappen’s priority for now. “We got through a lot of work and did a lot of laps and I think that’s the most important thing for me at the moment,” he said.

“I’m still getting used to the car, I don’t feel its full limit yet. It’s a new car, but I wasn’t nervous this morning, I just wanted to experience the car, I was eager to just go out and drive.”

Verstappen said he is still “learning a lot about the car”.

“The seat position, the steering wheel position, all the switches and the procedures are all completely different to the Toro Rosso, but we are working on it and it’s getting better and better.”

“Red Bull Racing is a good team and I enjoy working with them. If we have a good feeling tomorrow I will do my best and from there on we will see what happens; for sure you need a few weekends to be fully comfortable.”

2016 Spanish Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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10 comments on “Verstappen needs “a few weekends” to get comfortable”

  1. I hope the boy manages to cope with all the expectations and pressure he might be experiencing at the moment.

    1. I’ve seen Max on dutch TV many times lately. He just seems to enjoy everything. Totally relaxed at all time. Even when he was on TV when he was 11 years old. He even jokes about his temper fit in Australia.
      I think he has a special ability to look at himself and life (and it’s challenges) at e very positive way. So it takes most of the stress that comes with it for most people out of it.
      I’m very surprised every time about this 18 year old kid.

      I think he loves challenges. They make the best come out of him.
      Next to that he has a lot of talent in racing. Good combination.
      The mental part seems totally OK.

      We will be surprised this weekend. And the next.

      1. @ia Perhaps the very things you have observed are why he is where he is at such a young age. Others within F1 have noticed too that he is wise beyond his years. What a huge future he has.

  2. In contrast Kvyat is in a dark Mood, qnd his time adjusting to STR will be viewed as poor performance rather than adjusting to new car, team.

    Well its up to Max, if he fails to perform spectacullary in the future, he might be the youngest Red Bull driver to get booted.

  3. Guybrush Threepwood
    13th May 2016, 20:22

    I see Max is putting in place his insurance policy against Ric-damage.

    1. Exactly. He’s got a few insurance policies – New car, new team, young age and learning curve from experienced driver.

  4. Smart move to manage expectations a bit. He’s not going to be able to beat Ricciardo without more experience in the car, so it’s going to be a good result if he manages to finish 2 or 3 spots behind Daniel, without hitting his team mate or anyone else :P

    1. I think it’s not a ‘move’ but a plan. Just like last year, he doesn’t set targets. Just getting to know the car and finish.

  5. Hopefully, one day there will be comparison between Max and the greatest drivers of all time. However, when I see young drivers raising issues of adapting quickly – putting aside sim work so common today – I think of Jim Clark or Ayrton Senna. So, how much would Ayrton Senna need to get to the speed: “During his test for Williams at the 3.149-km (1.957-mi) Donington Park circuit, Senna completed 40 laps and was quicker than the other drivers, including Williams’ reigning World Champion Keke Rosberg.”

  6. 4th FP3: Pfff!

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