Red Bull pit crew, Autodromo Hermanos Redriguez, 2023

Red Bull reveal pit crew shortage in Mexico due to “huge amount of illness”

RaceFans Round-up

Posted on

| Written by

In the round-up: Red Bull reveal they were in a race against time to form a pit crew for the Mexican Grand Prix due to illness.

In brief

Red Bull had pit crew members missing for Mexico

Red Bull were almost without a full pit crew at this year’s Mexican Grand Prix, the team’s sporting director Jonathan Wheatley has revealed. The team typically uses a 21-strong crew and has several reserves.

“This year has been pretty tough for us in terms of illnesses and weddings, funerals, people missing events,” said Wheatley in an interview for the team’s website. “So you need to have quite a few people in reserve as well able to do it.”

But at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, for the 19th round of the 22-race season, even with trackside reserves they nearly” had insufficient crew members.

“We didn’t put a full crew together until Sunday morning, because there was so many people [ill],” continued Wheatley. “We had a huge amount of stomach illnesses in Mexico, and then the crew managed to put it together on the Sunday. I think we had three different people in the crew doing different jobs.”

Star F2 rookie Bearman stays at Prema for 2024

Oliver Bearman, who won four races as a Formula 2 rookie this year, will stay with Prema for his second season in the championship.

The 18-year-old Ferrari junior, who has appeared in Formula 1 test and practice sessions with Haas, was only beaten on wins and laps led by his team mate Frederik Vesti during the 2023 campaign and his three poles was a feat achieved by only one other driver.

“I’m really happy to be joining Prema again in F2,” said Bearman. “I’ve come a long way as a driver and as a person these two years thanks to them, and I’m excited to continue the work we have been doing into next season.” His team mate will be rookie Andrea Kimi Antonelli.

Verschoor returns to Trident’s F2 line-up

Richard Verschoor may have risen up the F2 points table this year by leaving Trident for Van Amersfoort Racing, but he will be back with the former for the 2024 season.

It will be his fourth year in F2, having debuted in 2021 with MP Motorsport. He claimed a win but did not see out the season with the team, leaving with two rounds to go and joining Charouz Racing System for the season finale to secure 11th in the standings. At Trident in 2022 he was fifth in the standings after three rounds, but a run of 19 races without a podium meant even when he finished second in two of the last five races he ended up 12th in the points table.

He got another win this year with VAR, but fewer podiums in total. Improved consistency meant on average he scored more points per race though, which resulted in ninth in the standings.

HDP turns into HRC USA

Honda Performance Development, which is responsible for Honda’s American motorsport activities including supplying engines in IndyCar and building prototype sportscars under the Acura brand, became Honda Racing Corporation USA yesterday as it moves closer to its Japanese counterpart within Honda Racing.

HRC USA, which was launched in 1993, will involve itself in Honda’s future F1 power units that will be used by Aston Martin from 2026 onwards. However it may bring an end to its decades-long presence in IndyCar, after its motorsport manager Chuck Schifsky said “we have great concerns over the costs” associated with the future engine regulations. HRC Japan currently provides support to Red Bull Powertrains in F1, having previously supplied its own power units to the Red Bull team.

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

Social media

Notable posts from X (formerly Twitter), TikTok and more:

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

Comment of the day

Alexander Albon took his Williams to 27 points and 13th in the standings while his team mate Logan Sargeant only scored one point and was eight places lower down the table. He impressed Alesici, particularly with his drive to seventh – his joint best result of the season – in the Canadian Grand Prix.

I was transfixed watching those last 25 laps in Canada from the in-car camera right behind Albon but never getting by. The main race television feed was of no interest to me, as I could observe Albon demonstrating stunningly accurate and consistent precision in his perpetual usage of every millimetre of the track’s width and no more. I’ve never seen this level of driving precision before in decades of watching F1 races.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Dan M, Huhhii and Tony Hamilton!

On this day in motorsport

Author information

Ida Wood
Often found in junior single-seater paddocks around Europe doing journalism and television commentary, or dabbling in teaching photography back in the UK. Currently based...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

7 comments on “Red Bull reveal pit crew shortage in Mexico due to “huge amount of illness””

  1. Violins out for Red Bull.
    Damn those weddings. How dare people drop dead without looking at the F1 calendar first.

  2. Coventry Climax
    21st December 2023, 1:28

    Verschoor’s 4th season.
    Seems we have a bit of driver constipation in the lower ranks as well, and it’s not just an F1 issue.
    It’s not like his previous results would have him move up earlier, had there been vacancies higher up.

  3. They didn’t seem to have fewer mechanics than usual during that weekend, so no wonder I never noticed at the time.

    1. What is being said here is ‘we don’t want more races in a season’.

  4. Oh, bless their little cotton socks.

    Thank God they managed it in time. Extreme drama.

  5. Thank you for the birthday wishes. The sport died when the greatest star, Kimi, decided to quit.

    Merry something, I don’t know. Just drink and remember to be happy.

    1. @todfod Does this even work? If it does happy holidays

Comments are closed.