Red Bull’s Max Verstappen Unhappy with “sliding” Car in Qualifying For 2021 Mexico City Grand Prix

(Image credit: Glenn Dunbar - Pool/Getty Images)

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen has admitted that he was unhappy with a “sliding” car as he struggled to third on the grid in Qualifying for 2021 Mexico City Grand Prix.

Verstappen had topped FP2 on Friday but found himself second in FP3 to teammate – Sergio Perez, after failing to improve on his own Qualifying simulation amidst issues with his rear wing for the second consecutive race weekend.

Qualifying however saw Verstappen fail to top any session after entering the weekend as hot favourite for pole position, which the 24 year-old specifically put down to “struggling to get the tyres to work today, we were sliding around a lot.”

Q3 however saw Verstappen endure grip issues on his first flier which left him 0.350 seconds adrift of Valtteri Bottas, who eventually claimed pole position after none of the top five improved on their final runs due to rising track temperatures despite Verstappen making tweaks to “find a better balance” on his car.

Perez and AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda though cost Verstappen a final shot at pole after both drivers ran wide throughs Turns 10 & 11, which forced the Dutchman to slow down and lose time.

Explaining that particular incident from his perspective, Verstappen said: ” I don’t know what happened in front of me but I saw Checo and Yuki both go wide and I saw a lot of dust so I thought that a car had crashed.

“I’ve been caught out by yellow flags here before so I slowed down, as a result I lost a lot of momentum and time.”

Verstappen consequently was disappointed that Red Bull failed to lock out the front row after looking quick all weekend, although he believes that the long run to the first corner will offer him a slipstream opportunity but is prepared to see what happens given the potential for drama at that corner.

Perez meanwhile was disappointed to not follow up an impressive FP3 where he set the fastest time with pole but he revealed that he had to change his rear wing before Qualifying.

Explaining how different the car felt and the incident with Tsunoda, Perez commented: “The car was not the same as it was in FP3 after we had to change the rear wing, but we did couple of adjustments in the session and once we got on top of it, all of a sudden I found Yuki off his racing line ahead of me at turn 11, which hurt my final lap.”

The Mexican though refused to lay blame towards Tsunoda as he instead took responsibility for getting “too close” to the Japanese’s AlphaTauri, which in turn caused him to brake and lose downforce on top of receiving “a lot of dirty air” which caused him to run wide and ruin his lap.

Looking ahead to the race, Perez admitted that his start will be crucial as he added: “I think the launch we have tomorrow is more important than the grid position, there is a long race ahead and we will try to be there, I am optimistic and I hope all the fans enjoy it.”

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.