Aston Martin Red Bull Racing driver Max Verstappen is unhappy over the situation that occurred at the end of qualifying, where he lost the chance to set a final lap after being caught out when cars passed him in the queue leading up to setting the final runs.
Verstappen, as well as Red Bull team-mate Pierre Gasly and both Rich Energy Haas F1 Team cars failed to set a time during the final moments of qualifying, as they failed to pass the start line before the timer ran out. Verstappen as a result lost out on a chance on improving his lap time and the chance to start within the top three.
The Dutch driver was caught out by the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel and both Renault cars, who passed the Red Bull at the final hairpin and catching the twenty-one year old out. Verstappen reported over the radio that he was ‘trying to be nice’ and allow the cars by as he was setting up for his final run, but as a result, Dutch driver ran out of time to cross the line and set a lap.
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Verstappen will start the race in fifth place alongside team-mate Gasly. The Dutchman commented on his view of the events that occurred in the final moments of qualifying, where he feels annoyed to miss out on the chance to battle for third as a result of the incident.
“On the final run in Q3 I followed the Ferrari in front of me as we were all in a queue,” commented Verstappen. “I was actually trying to be nice and not overtake, as that’s not what you do in qualifying when you’re all trying to prepare for the last run.”
“This time it caught me out when I was overtaken at the end of the lap. I am of course not happy with that, or to be fifth, but we didn’t get the opportunity to do a final lap.
“I’m sure this will swing around and happen to other people at another time but it’s annoying as we were fighting for third.”
After qualifying, Verstappen commented to the world’s media that if the scenario were to present itself again, he’ll do the opposite and pass cars in a bid to start a flying lap rather than queue before the line.
The conundrum that happened on track meant Verstappen lost the chance to improve on his time and was a spectator as fellow drivers overtook the Dutch driver on the timing screens.
With fifth place for the Verstappen, he hopes to be in the fight for a podium position for the race on Sunday, but is unsure whether the team has the race pace to fight for the win.
“Of course, when you can’t do the last lap in Q3 you know the guys who are doing the lap have a chance of overtaking you and that’s what happened,” added Verstappen.
“It is how it is, and it will make tomorrow more interesting. We have good race pace, I’m not sure if we have the pace for a victory, but for sure we will fight for a podium.”