“Not What I’m Here For” – Max Verstappen Has a Message for Red Bull Ahead of 2021 F1 Season

Published 01/17/2021, 3:06 AM EST
MONTMELO, SPAIN: Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing walks in the Paddock during previews ahead of the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Catalunya in Montmelo, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)


Title challenges are never easy, especially when the opponent in front exudes dominance all-round. Max Verstappen faced the aforementioned in 2020, with Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas finishing ahead of him in the Drivers’ standings.

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Verstappen also suffered mechanical problems in a few races, forcing him to retire altogether. He discussed this issue and believes that heading into 2021, everyone at Red Bull needs to learn from it, collectively.

Speaking in an interview, the Dutchman stated, “It’s not nice. We could definitely have fought for second in the championship but, at the end of the day, that’s not what I’m here for.”

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Would have liked to have better reliability in 2020 season, says Max Verstappen

“If you are second or third it doesn’t matter. But of course, I would have liked to have better reliability but it is what it is.”

“You cannot change that now. We learnt a lot from it and we will try to do better next year.”

Formula One F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in action during the race Pool via REUTERS/Giuseppe Cacace

For a team like Red Bull, consistency certainly becomes the key if they’re eyeing a Constructors’ title. The 23-year-old definitely has the desire to challenge for the Drivers’ title. However, in order to succeed, he also needs a reliable car to accompany him on the journey.

Verstappen continued and said, “Of course I would have liked to fight for the championship but I think quite quickly we began to realise this was not possible.

The Red Bull star enjoyed some good moments with his car in 2020

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“But I still enjoyed the races where I got absolutely everything out of the car in a qualifying session or in a race. I had some good moments with that,” concluded the Red Bull driver.

Formula One F1 – Sakhir Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates after qualifying in third position Pool via REUTERS/Tolga Bozoglu

Verstappen achieved some glorious moments of success in 2020, notably notching up pole position in the Abu Dhabi GP. He went onto win the race, much like he did the 70th Anniversary race following Mercedes’ troubles.

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Therefore, Red Bull’s full focus will center around building a more reliable unit that can go the distance. With Verstappen looking in good form, it promises to be a closer title fight in the 2021 season.

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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