Verstappen says rivals "almost stood still" at start

Max Verstappen said it felt like his Formula 1 rivals "almost stood still" in the incident where he damaged his Red Bull at the start of the Italian Grand Prix.

Verstappen says rivals "almost stood still" at start

Having started at the back of the grid due to an engine change penalty, Verstappen picked up front wing damage when he clipped Sergio Perez's Racing Point at the first corner at Monza.

Verstappen could only recover to eighth place, ironically spending the final laps trapped behind Perez.

"It was not even late braking, just following, following..." said Verstappen when asked about the first corner incident by Motorsport.com.

"Suddenly everything almost stood still. I tried to avoid it but I still clipped Sergio, I think, on the rear wheel and I think the front wing was a bit down so we boxed."

He described the rest of the race as "odd", having also lost ground when cars around him were able to take their pitstops under the virtual safety car triggered by Carlos Sainz's McLaren parking with a loose wheel.

"We had good pace. I got through quite a lot of cars, but then I got stuck behind Sergio. They had such a high top speed, I had no chance to get by," Verstappen added.

"Then I was unlucky again with the virtual safety car, two or three cars overtook me in the pitstop because of that.

"The whole race everything was just against us and it just didn't work out.

"Sometimes starting at the back it works out brilliantly, like in Austin last year, but you can't expect it to be like that all the time of course."

Read Also:

Perez was also carrying an engine change penalty so started 18th and credited "good pace, good overtaking" for his progress to seventh. He was among the drivers able to pit under the VSC.

"The last 15-20 laps were very, very tricky and we pushed from there to the end," he said when asked about fending off Verstappen.

"It was very difficult, he was very quick. He closed down to me extremely quick, but luckily I didn't lose any time with [Antonio] Giovinazzi when I overtook him everything worked out for us."

When it was put to him that Perez had enjoyed their battle, Verstappen replied: "I want to get by so you're not really enjoying it getting stuck but I can understand from his side of course keeping a Red Bull behind for them is a good achievement".

Verstappen believes his pace would have been comparable to Mercedes and Ferrari if he had been able to start with them.

"I could go with the guys in front. I could see them on the screen and I was following my progression," he said.

"I knew their lap times and I was not losing out. Of course when I got in traffic I lost time, but all the time when I was in free air they were not faster.

"So that's of course very promising on a track where you're normally not that competitive.

"Today was about surviving and trying to score a few points. We did that, but I'm now really looking forward to starting at the front again in Singapore because we've had our penalties and hopefully also our trouble and now we can just focus on performance."

shares
comments
McLaren fined for Sainz's unsafe release at Monza

Previous article

McLaren fined for Sainz's unsafe release at Monza

Next article

Leclerc: Verstappen lesson helped me beat Hamilton

Leclerc: Verstappen lesson helped me beat Hamilton
Load comments
Why unseen Hungary heroics could be Latifi's making Prime

Why unseen Hungary heroics could be Latifi's making

The chaotic start to the Hungarian GP set the scene for F1's less heralded drivers to make a name for themselves. Esteban Ocon did just that to win in fine style, but further down the order one driver was making his first visit to the points and - while the circumstances were fortunate - took full advantage of the chance presented to him

Formula 1
Aug 3, 2021
Hungarian Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Hungarian Grand Prix driver ratings

This was race that showcased the best and worst of Formula 1, producing a first time winner and a memorable comeback to a podium finish. Avoiding trouble at the start and astute strategy calls were key to success, but where some drivers took full advantage, others made key errors that cost them dearly

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The "heart-breaking" call that led to Ocon's Hungarian GP triumph Prime

The "heart-breaking" call that led to Ocon's Hungarian GP triumph

Set to restart the red-flagged Hungarian Grand Prix in second, Esteban Ocon had some doubts when he peeled into the pits to swap his intermediate tyres for slicks. But this "heart-breaking" call was vindicated in spectacular fashion as the Alpine driver staved off race-long pressure from Sebastian Vettel for a memorable maiden Formula 1 victory

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Prime

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021
Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track' Prime

Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track'

Mercedes ended Friday practice at the Hungaroring with a clear gap to Red Bull thanks to Valtteri Bottas’s pace in topping FP2. But there are other reasons why the Black Arrows squad feels satisfied with its progress so far at a track many Formula 1 observers reckon favours Red Bull overall...

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021
How Red Bull endured its second car crash in two weeks Prime

How Red Bull endured its second car crash in two weeks

OPINION: Red Bull was justified to be upset that Lewis Hamilton survived his British GP clash with Max Verstappen and went on to win. But its attempts to lobby the FIA to reconsider the severity of Hamilton's in-race penalty were always likely to backfire, and have only succeeded in creating a PR disaster that will distract from its on-track efforts

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021
The ‘screaming’ F1 engine future that may not be out of reach Prime

The ‘screaming’ F1 engine future that may not be out of reach

OPINION: It wasn't just the Verstappen/Hamilton clash that had the Red Bull and Mercedes bosses at loggerheads at Silverstone, with the nature of Formula 1's 2025 engines also subject for disagreement. But hopes to have loud, emotive engines that are also environmentally friendly don't have to be opposed.

Formula 1
Jul 29, 2021
How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’ Prime

How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’

Cast in the mould of its founder Colin Chapman, Lotus was powerful and daring but flawed – as it proved through further soaring peaks and painful troughs into the 1980s. DAMIEN SMITH examines a game-changing era

Formula 1
Jul 27, 2021