Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Red Bull Ring, 2020

Horner: Cause of Verstappen’s retirement has been “seen previously” by Honda

2020 F1 season

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Red Bull team principal Christian Horner says the technical problem which put Max Verstappen out of the Austrian Grand Prix has been seen by Honda before.

Verstappen was running second behind eventual winner Valtteri Bottas when he retired early on with a suspected power unit failure. “It’s currently under investigation together with Honda,” said Horner. “So as soon as we have some conclusions we’ll let you know.

“It’s not something that we haven’t seen previously.”

Both Mercedes drivers had to manage problems with their cars later in the race. Horner believes Verstappen would have had a chance to win if he hadn’t retired.

“I think a win could have been on the cards today for Max,” he said. “He was holding pace with Valtteri.

“You could see towards the end of the stint Valtteri started to get into some tyre problems. We would have stopped under the pace car, taken the hard tyre that everybody did. And then on the second Safety Car, would Mercedes have stayed out? We would have done the opposite to whatever they did.

“So you just don’t know but I think strategically we were sharp, we were very strong today. It’s a shame we have no points to show for it.”

Verstappen’s team mate Alexander Albon also retired with a power unit-related problem. “Again, we need Honda to come back to us with the full details on that,” said Horner. “But a full investigation is going on.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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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12 comments on “Horner: Cause of Verstappen’s retirement has been “seen previously” by Honda”

  1. The Power of Dreams.

    1. The power of GP2.

    2. In their dreams Albon also won the race with failed PU.

  2. I would say it is all Karma, but now we know it is also called Honda!

    1. With two merc engine failures and two morelimping home and one Renault down, its not uncommon it seems
      Only the underpowered ferarris survived.

  3. Any chance of a championship fight dead in the water, such a shame

  4. How unusual to see a Mercedes win?

  5. Honda’s back! They spent a season in unusual form where they were actually relatively competitive and reliable… but it was only a matter of time before they get back to the usual form where they are investigating issues and lacking power.

    It’s a shame Red Bull isn’t going to ever be favourites for the title with this engine in the back.

    1. Imagine to hate Honda so much, probably because of Alonso’ bad seasons. LOL, what a sore loser. We all should be wishing well to all motorist, for the sake of good races.

  6. So, Red Bull might end up leaving Austria with their PU allocation used up and facing penalties already.
    And this current engine version is now locked in for the rest of the 2020 season.

    Let’s see how long the Honda praise lasts.

    1. You final point is quite pertinent, if these were Renault PUs the whining would be truly unbearable!

    2. Guys, 9 out of 20 cars retired from the race, which in itself is bad. To echo someone’s words above, Mercedes and Renault engines also failed. Even Bottas and Hamilton were struggling. The Alpha Tauris had no engine problems so don’t crucify Honda just yet

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