Las Vegas Grand Prix was “a lot of fun” in the end – Verstappen

Formula 1

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Las Vegas Grand Prix winner Max Verstappen described the race as “a lot of fun”, having previously criticised Formula 1’s newest event.

Before the weekend began Verstappen criticised the layout of the track and described the event as “99% show”. But following his victory in a lively race, in which he passed Charles Leclerc to win, Verstappen said the layout provided good racing.

“You could clearly see with the DRS around here it was very powerful,” said Verstappen. “So even when you would take the lead, if the guy behind would stay in the DRS, he would still have an opportunity to come back at you.

“Which I think created quite a lot of good racing here today. So it was definitely a lot of fun.”

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Verstappen got ahead of Leclerc at the start but was penalised for forcing his rival off the track as he did so. He was then passed by Leclerc and after serving his penalty suffered damaged when he tangled with George Russell. He made another pit stop during a Safety Car period but from there was able to work his way back into the lead.

“It was a tough one,” said Verstappen. “I tried to go for it at the start, I think we both braked quite late and then I just ran out of grip and we ended up a bit wide so the stewards gave me a penalty for that.

“Then of course, that put us a little bit on the back foot. I had to pass quite a few cars and, of course, the Safety Car. So at that point there already was a lot going on in the race.

“Then once we had the message to the end that we can go flat-out I had to pass a few cars to get into the battle with them.”

Poll: Rate the Race – 2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix
Red Bull decided not to replace Verstappen’s damaged front wing when he made his second pit stop. “We were happy not to touch it because it looked already quite broken,” said Verstappen. “Of course the structure was fine, but it’s never ideal, there was always a bit more understeer in the car, but luckily we could still win the race.”

Before the race several drivers expressed concerns the low-grip track surface would make it difficult to overtake. However Verstappen said the surface actually produced good racing.

“I think the low degradation, with the Tarmac here, you could really push on the tyres, which I think was good. So like I said it was a lot of fun out there.”

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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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12 comments on “Las Vegas Grand Prix was “a lot of fun” in the end – Verstappen”

  1. fun or not it’s still one of the worst track on the calender if not the worst.

    absolutely dire circuit. utterly awful soul-less, lifeless atrocious excuse for a racetrack.

    it’s basically criminal that we have to suffer this atrocity when you have much better circuits including a few that are truly great circuits are sitting idle because there not surrounded by cringe neon lights with all the other ridiculousness we’ve had to suffer through this weekend.

    seriously would any fan really mourn the loss of this awful track if it wasn’t on next years schedule? but sadly i guess we’ll have to suffer with it for a few years more :(

    1. Suffer? c’mon… If you don’t like it, don’t watch… No ones making anyone suffer through anything. Overly dramatic.

      1. @skipgamer If you don’t like it, don’t watch

        so basically your admitting that liberty media are driving long time fans of the SPORT away and you want to encourage that by telling the real race fans & real fans of the SPORT that they shouldn’t watch if they don’t like the liberty media show over sport approach.

        turning off your most dedicated, knowledgable & passionate fans is great way to keep your fanbase!

        but then it’s clear at this point that liberty don’t care for the real dedicated, knowledgable & passionate fans as not only is everything they are doing pushing many of them away but they also actively talk down & mock them for daring to push back about there show over sport contrived american nonsense.

        welcome to formula nascar.

        1. since ending of season 2021

        2. you want to encourage that by telling the real race fans & real fans of the SPORT that they shouldn’t watch if they don’t like the liberty media show over sport approach.

          Uhhh, yeah, that’s actually spot on… If you’re not going to do that, don’t pretend you’re being made to suffer, at least not in this age when there’s very real suffering going on in the world. You’re making a choice to consume a product, nobody is forcing you to do anything. There’s plenty of other top-flight racing series out there that aren’t turning into “show over sport contrived American nonsense”.

          1. @skipgamer There’s plenty of other top-flight racing series out there

            but none of them are f1 & especially now that all other single seater racing has become spec categories there really is no replacement.

            indycar used to be a real alternative back in the cart days of more open regulations & competition but now it’s just another spec category that i don’t find especially interesting. wec is interesting but i don’t like the artificial bop thats open to manipulation and tbh i don’t always have time to dedicate to 6+ hour races now anyway, i’ve always been more into the grand prix style racing seen in f1.

            i have always loved f1 above anything else because of what f1 was. the pinnacle of the SPORT that was just as much about the engineering, technical and development race as it was the race between teams & drivers.

            i used to enjoy some of the lower categories more when they were more open with multiple chassis, engines, tires & development. but now there just all quite dull because of how restrictive and spec they have become.

          2. but none of them are f1

            F1 isn’t your definition of F1 anymore either and hasn’t been for decades, but you seem to keep watching it – or at least complaining about it a lot.

            I suggest you turn your attention to club racing. The sport and engineering diversity is where the money isn’t.

        3. lynn-m, your posts give the impression of a rather odd contradiction – that is, you seem to have been putting in a considerable amount of effort into watching this race in order to maximise the amount that you can complain about it afterwards. It’s as if you actively sought out as much material as possible that you would be offended by in order to then post about how much it offended you.

    2. The only thing I’m suffering is your copy & paste comment on every possible post.

    3. Pretty much agree @lynn-m.

      It’s just a terrible track and the racing may have been better than expected but that doesn’t make the track itself any better.

      I mean that last race at the Valencia street circuit in 2012 was actually a rather good race but that doesn’t change anyone’s view on the track. Everyone thought it was terrible before 2012 & everyone felt the same after. Nobody was sorry to see t dropped & nobody is pushing to see it return.

  2. I think I might be in the minority who actually appreciates having this circuit on the calendar. I was hugely sceptical of the whole Vegas round and didn’t hold high hopes after the awkward opening ceremony and Thursday’s disaster. Qualifying and the race changed my mind quite considerably. This race is the closest thing we have to oval racing on the calendar and reminded me of the one-off Bahrain outer circuit race in 2020. I quite like to see variety on the calendar and I can’t help but feel this event delivered exactly that. It probably helps that the start time here in Australia was a very convenient 5pm EST on Sunday afternoon. I was pleasantly surprised by how good the race was and actually look forward to next year’s race. I definitely would have scoffed at such a suggestion mere days ago!

  3. Just listened to the radio replay and it was a far better race than I feared it might be :)

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