F1, Verstappen makes ‘big margin’ claim that will worry F1 rivals

Max Verstappen believes the performance of his Red Bull will improve immeasurably this year if a fix can be found for a weakness of the car that is undermining the defence of his F1 drivers’ title.

Verstappen emerged from the Canadian Grand Prix with a victory that was not expected going into the weekend given the RB20’s issues in riding the kerbs that were magnified over the previous outing in Monaco where the three-time champion struggled.

But the 26-year-old, who suffered an ERS issue on Friday that compromised his running in practice, delivered another faultless drive in the race to take the chequered flag for the 60th time in his career – aided in part by the first safety car period.

For Verstappen, though, it was another tricky weekend overall, something he is wanting to avoid at the next race in Spain and the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya that should favour Red Bull.

“I would hope so,” he said, when asked if he felt Red Bull would be stronger in the Spanish Grand Prix.

“The last few races have been quite difficult, but not only just difficult, too many problems as well, throughout the whole weekend. So we need to have a cleaner weekend.

“Even in the race now [Canadian GP], we’re struggling a lot with the kerbing and the bumps. So we definitely have an area we can work on and definitely improve the car by quite a big margin if we get that under control.”

The fact there is masked performance hidden inside a car that has already won six of this year’s nine grands prix will be a cause for concern for the likes of McLaren, Ferrari, and a revitalised Mercedes, who have closed the gap this season.

Verstappen is convinced the issue can be solved “without influencing any other part of the car”. If so, the RB20 is likely to find a level as yet not seen that would likely carry both driver and team to more titles.

“We know that this [kerb riding] is a weakness and I also know that we are flat out working on it to try and fix it,” said Verstappen.
“I really feel like it’s quite a big performance limitation for us at the moment.

“Of course, naturally, I’m also looking forward to some tracks where we don’t really need to take too many kerbs or too many bumps.

“You can see already, every weekend so far, it’s been…some teams are a bit stronger at particular tracks, and I guess that in a way, of course, makes it very exciting.”

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