First day at Spa “very positive” for Verstappen despite crash

2021 Belgian Grand Prix

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Max Verstappen said he was pleased with his progress after the first day of practice at Spa despite damaging his car in a crash at the end of the second session.

The Red Bull driver spun backwards into the barrier at the exit of Les Combes a few minutes before the end of second practice. “I just lost the rear,” he explained. “A bit too much oversteer to correct and unfortunately hit the wall.”

Verstappen set the quickest time over the two sessions, putting him fractionally ahead of the two Mercedes drivers. He, Valtteri Bottas and championship rival Lewis Hamilton were covered by less than a tenth of a second.

“It was good,” Verstappen said, “I think the whole day we were quite happy.

“Of course there’s a few things to fine-tune from FP1 to FP2. Overall very happy, I think definitely a very positive start.”

Friday’s running was affected by light rain in the morning, but conditions are forecast to deteriorate over the coming days. Verstappen said it was hard to judge how his car will perform in wet conditions.

“It’s difficult to say in the wet because so far we haven’t really driven in it yet. I think every day will be a bit like a worse day.”

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2021 Belgian 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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15 comments on “First day at Spa “very positive” for Verstappen despite crash”

  1. Barry Bens (@barryfromdownunder)
    27th August 2021, 15:46

    This season and the previous one really baffled me with the fragility of some parts and the strength of others. Liek this shunt of Verstappen: it didn’t seem all that bad (speed-wise) but then you see the rear of the car and it’s in shambles. Then other times you see a crash like Norris being pushed into Verstappen in Hungary and yeah sure, there’s some damage and some could be fixed under the red flag, but it’s still drivable.

  2. On the surface it looks like he’s pushing very hard to stay in front of Mercedes.

    1. Coventry Climax
      27th August 2021, 16:26

      Yep, the Merc brothers have a much more easy job, by the looks of it. Hamilton will come out on top again, saturday, only to then say it’s been very difficult, but the team have kept pushing, and he’s so proud and thankful. The usual blah.

  3. Verstappen drives at the very edge of what the car is capable of.

    It is the risk he needs to take to stay in touch with the Mercs.

    Gasly, Albon and Perez cannot match Verstappen in that. I really wonder if Verstappen could squeeze out 0.2s extra out of that Merc too.

    1. It’s certainly possible, after all hamilton is beyond his peak now and he can’t be as fast as an equally talented driver who’s like 13 years younger, I think leclerc, verstappen, norris and russell may have that extra edge now.

      1. For sure… Then there is a certain Fernando, he ages backwards now.

        1. Lol
          He can’t even beat ocon.

  4. I am afraid Mercs have the pace edge, it was just Maz taking the maximum out of the cars, pushing it to the limits.

    Perez is miles off the pace making Redbull look like a midfield team unless he was sand bagging a lot, I mean a lot.

    1. No unfortunately that is the real RB pace. Mercedes is miles in front this season. Just their propaganda machine telling different. Just look at Perez all year and you know enough

  5. Peter Farrington
    27th August 2021, 17:35

    Max crashed ! Not a Mercedes in sight ! Who will Horner & Marko blame this time !
    I will send the Bill to who ???

    1. Probably the wind, williams already does!

  6. One thing people are missing is that Mercedes was within a tenth of Max’s time despite being on a slower tyre.

    1. Aha, I was wondering about that. And I really would like to see a table just comparing long run times. FP timings are fun for pole predictions but its Race day that matters more, especially on a track where a pass is relatively better possible compared to a lot of tracks.

  7. Max fans looking for their next excuse already I see ^^^

    1. Excuse for what? His stellar driving this season?

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