Max Verstappen’s afternoon in the Ardennes Forest unravelled almost as soon as the lights went out at Spa-Francorchamps on Sunday, with the Dutchman missing out on points after finishing in eleventh position.
Having becoming the youngest driver to start from the front row of the grid in Formula 1 history, Verstappen made a mess of the start, and dropped behind both Scuderia Ferrari drivers on the run down to La Source, only to attempt to get by them once more by out-braking them on the inside.
Unfortunately for the Red Bull Racing driver, neither Kimi Raikkonen or Sebastian Vettel were willing to lose their position, and it meant that the trio collided, leaving Verstappen with a broken front wing and a heavily damaged floor that compromised the rest of his afternoon’s running.
“Today was very unfortunate,” said Verstappen. “I didn’t start as well as I wanted but I got up the inside for the first corner then got squeezed by the two Ferraris.
“In the contact my front wing and the floor got destroyed so then the car was very difficult to drive and the race was gone. Still, I tried my best to come back especially for all the people who were cheering me on in the stands, but unfortunately I didn’t get in the points.”
Verstappen was happy to see team-mate Daniel Ricciardo grab a podium finish, and the Dutchman is now looking to next weekend’s Italian Grand Prix to return to the points.
“Luckily we got Daniel on the podium so we still scored some more points for the team,” said Verstappen. “It’s good to have another race next week and we’ll try to do the best job possible at Monza.
“The race didn’t turn out the way I wanted but before that we had a great weekend here in Spa and it was great to have some interaction with all the fans who came out to support me.”