Max Verstappen Calls for F1 to Learn From Formula E Amid Engine Saga at Spa

Published 08/27/2021, 4:20 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium – August 26, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in the FIA Press Conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS


The hopes of Max Verstappen winning the F1 title this season is already under immense threat, but it isn’t necessarily arriving from Lewis Hamilton’s on-track pressure. Instead, it’s the Formula 1 rule that could force Verstappen to take up grid penalties at the upcoming Belgian GP.

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The Hungarian Grand Prix incident involving Valtteri Bottas caused significant damages to both the Red Bull cars. And both Verstappen and his teammate, Sergio Perez, were sporting their 3rd engine of the season during the multi-car crash on lap 1.

Now, with engine penalties haunting Red Bull, Verstappen demanded a change of rules in F1. Weeks after Ferrari’s boss, Mattia Binotto, demanded that Mercedes must bear the cost of damage for the Hungarian GP, Verstappen arrived with his own opinion ahead of the Belgian GP.

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What did Max Verstappen say?

As reported by Motorsport-Total, the Dutchman reckoned that F1 must tweak the rules similar to that of Formula-E. Apparently, the FE rules suggest that if and when a car is damaged by another car, the victim team are allowed to change the parts without taking up a penalty.

We have to look at that,” Verstappen said. “If someone crashes into you and you are damaged and the rules require you to use an additional motor, then that’s not how it should be. There should be a little more leeway.

Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium – August 26, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in the FIA Press Conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS

In Formula E, I think that is what they do, that you can change parts if another driver damages your car. We have to look at that, especially when you are so limited with the engines and all other parts. Especially with the budget limit,” Verstappen added.

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Will Verstappen suffer a grid penalty at Spa?

Following the Hungarian GP, a grid penalty for exceeding the engine limit has looked inevitable. Now, it is all about strategic gameplay for Red Bull. The Milton Keynes outfit will be looking to opt for new engines at either Spa or Monza, two of the circuits where overtaking isn’t a major cause of concern.

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Hence, asked about when the engine change could occur, Verstappen remained mute over the matter. He further affirmed Red Bull have already started drafting out plans to limit the damages to the title hope with the penalty.

Formula One F1 – Hungarian Grand Prix – Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary – August 1, 2021 McLaren’s Lando Norris collides with Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen Pool via REUTERS/Peter Kohalmi

I don’t know yet,” he said. “We’ll see where we can get a new engine if necessary. I can’t comment on it at the moment. The team looks at what is possible.”

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Overall, amidst potential weather threats, Red Bull could take a gamble and bring in new power units for both Verstappen and Perez at Spa. Hence, can the Red Bull duo use the conditions to their advantage and secure a strong finish this weekend? Well, let’s see how the future pans out.

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Rohit Kumar

1167 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.

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