Emilia Romagna GP: Max Verstappen Accepts Awful F1 Luck in Italy

Published 04/17/2021, 3:07 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen on the grid before the race Pool via REUTERS/Andrej Isakovic


Max Verstappen seems to be carrying a curse that haunts him when he steps into the Italian circuits, especially Imola. The Dutchman has been experiencing awful luck at Emilia Romagna ever since the Grand Prix’s return to the calendar last season.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

And the poor run has extended into this season as well. Verstappen’s Red Bull faced a massive blow early in FP2, as a driveshaft issue forced him to retire from the session after completing just five laps.

What did Max Verstappen say?

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

As reported by AutoSport, the Dutchman opened up about his unlucky spell with the Italian race weekends. “I like Italy,” he said. “The food is good, I enjoy being here. Just the driving part so far hasn’t been the luckiest.

I had a driveshaft issue, so I had to stop the car.”

Formula One F1 – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy – April 16, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in action during practice REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

What’s painful is the horrible timing of the retirement. When the issue struck the Red Bull, Verstappen had already crossed the pit lane entry. Ultimately, he parked his car right alongside the pits on the main straight, leaving the team with no chance of receiving the car anytime soon.

Hence, the crew had to wait longer than expected, as the car made a lengthy trip around the circuit on the truck before being handed over to the Red Bull’s garage.

Should be alright: Verstappen

With the rivalry between Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton flaring up, one might consider the FP2 retirement to be a massive fallback for the Dutchman.

However, the Red Bull driver reckoned that the damage is minimal despite the much lesser track run on Friday. “A little bit. But I think you know what you have to do anyway, so you should be alright,” he said.

Formula One F1 – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy – Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in action during practice REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

In 2020, Verstappen failed to finish all the three race weekends in Italy – Monza, Imola, and Mugello. While Mugello’s retirement was primarily because he was caught in a chain of collisions, the other two race retirements were due to reliability issues.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

This is definitely not a record one would wish to own. Hence, Verstappen will be yearning to break the shackles this time around and secure what will be his first podium on the Italian soil. But will he?

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

DIVE DEEPER

WATCH: Max Verstappen Suffers Spectacular Tire Blowout During the Emilia Romagna GP

9 months ago

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Rohit Kumar

934 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

essentiallysports's Stories