29 Aug 2021 ID: 343670
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Max Wins A Disrupted Belgian Grand Prix For Red Bull Racing Honda

Max Wins A Disrupted Belgian Grand Prix For Red Bull Racing Honda

Max was credited with victory in the Belgian Grand Prix but there was no racing action as weather conditions resulted in a half-points result. It meant we won our 50th race in partnership with Red Bull Racing, even if we would have preferred to have done it with a bit more excitement!

Heavy rain made for extremely difficult conditions before the race and Sergio unfortunately slid off the road at Les Combes, damaging his front right suspension and ending his hopes of taking the planned start.

However as the rain intensified there was a delay to the start, and although a number of formation laps were carried out the start had to be suspended due to the standing water and poor visibility. After a delay of more than three hours, the race officially started behind the Safety Car meaning Max was the leader, with Pierre still in his qualifying position of sixth place and Yuki in 15th place.

Red Bull did a great job to repair Sergio’s car in order to get him back into the race, but having joined the back of the queue behind the Safety Car there were no racing laps before the race was red-flagged once again due to the conditions, meaning he was classified in 20th place.

With at least two laps completed by the leader and the race classification taken at the end of the first lap, half points were awarded meaning Max scores 12.5 to close the gap at the top of the championship, and Pierre adds four to his and Scuderia AlphaTauri’s tally.

 

Toyoharu Tanabe

Technical Director, Honda Racing F1

"Because of the very bad conditions with rain falling all day, we only managed a few laps behind the Safety Car. This was a great shame for all the spectators who stayed right to the end in the hope of seeing a race. We really wanted to be able to put on a good show for them. Thanks to his pole position yesterday, Max was declared the winner in what was our 50th race with Red Bull Racing. Pierre also picked up points for sixth place, so both our teams scored points, which is always satisfying. Unfortunately, although the mechanics did a great job to repair Checo’s car after he went off on the formation lap, he had to start from pit lane with no chance of points. Now we head to Zandvoort for next weekend’s race, the second consecutive home Grand Prix for Max and we are already focussing on getting the best possible result with both our teams."

 

Max Verstappen

Red Bull Racing Honda

Race: Pos. 1st

"It is always good to win and the points are important but today is not how anyone wants to do it, especially on our 50th start with Honda. In hindsight it was very important to get pole yesterday and although it’s a big shame not to do some proper racing laps, as I really love coming to this track, it was just impossible in these conditions. I thought maybe at 15:30 the conditions were a bit better than just now when we tried to re-start but the visibility was still very low and I understand why we couldn’t race today. For me in the lead the visibility was a lot better, even with the Safety Car ahead, but the guys behind me couldn’t see a single thing and if someone went off at Eau Rouge and bounced back onto the track they could have been T-boned at high speed which we do not want. It was also extremely low grip and because it kept raining all afternoon it just didn’t improve. I think today the big credit goes to the fans around the track who stayed here the whole day in the rain, wind and cold. It must have been horrible to sit in those conditions so a big thanks goes to them and they should be the real winners from today. Now we have to keep on pushing and trying to re-gain the championship lead. I’m confident we have a good car and there is a long way to go so we just need to make sure we get the best performance out of it for the rest of the season."

 

Sergio Perez

Red Bull Racing Honda

Race: Pos. 20th

"It was a strange afternoon and I have to say thank you to the fans, they were incredible for staying with us in the rain and cold. It’s a shame we couldn’t put on a good race for them today but we as a sport tried our best to race but it just wasn’t possible. The lap to grid was my mistake, the conditions and visibility were extremely poor and I just went on the kerb and lost it. I always knew there was a small chance we could get the car back out and the Team was pushing hard, really showing the spirit of Red Bull Racing which was nice to see. My Team did what they do best and they repaired the car so quickly it was incredible. I really wanted to repay them for their hard work during the race but that didn’t happen, luckily we are racing again in a few days and we all look forward to Zandvoort now!"

 

Pierre Gasly

Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda

Race: Pos. 6th

"It’s been a long day and I’m very disappointed that we didn’t get to race. I think we all feel very sorry for the fans that have stayed with us in the rain all day, without any racing and I would like to thank them all for staying until the end. However, the conditions were very extreme, I don’t think I’ve driven in conditions worse than this before. I think that the problem was that if anyone spun in the first lap, there was absolutely no visibility and there would’ve been a big accident. We know how dangerous it can be to race here, so this was absolutely the correct decision."

 

Yuki Tsunoda

Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda

Race: Pos. 15th

"It was clearly not possible to race today, especially for any drivers from P7 onwards, I think the visibility was just too poor. It would’ve been far too dangerous to race in these conditions here today, particularly on such a high-speed track like Spa, so for safety I think the FIA made the right decision today. Obviously, it’s disappointing on a personal note to not have had the opportunity to race for points today, but safety is far more important."

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Carmine Moscaritolo
Carmine Moscaritolo
Honda Motor Europe
Motorsport Communications Section Manager
United Kingdom