Explained: Gianpiero Lambiase’s ‘see you on Friday’ message to Max Verstappen

Thomas Maher
Max Verstappen wins his 50th F1 Grand Prix, celebrating on the podium at the Circuit of the Americas.

Max Verstappen: Racking up the F1 wins

Christian Horner has explained why Gianpiero Lambiase quickly said goodbye to Max Verstappen on team radio after winning the US Grand Prix.

Verstappen and Lambiase said goodbye to each other as soon as the Dutch driver crossed the line to claim victory at the Circuit of The Americas, claiming his 50th F1 career win.

The three-time World Champion had had to work hard for the win, starting from sixth on the grid, and had complained vociferously about how his brakes weren’t working to his liking during the course of the race as he attempted to stay ahead of Lando Norris and, later, Lewis Hamilton.

Max Verstappen and Gianpiero Lambiase’s terse radio exchanges

Verstappen and Lambiase are well known for their radio exchanges, with the race engineer well capable of standing up to the Dutch driver’s infamous temper.

But even Lambiase seemed to be treating Verstappen with kid gloves as they spoke about the brake issues,

“Aww mate, the brakes are so s**t compared to yesterday!” Verstappen said. “What a piece of s**t!”

Lambiase replied, “Understood” and, later, said, “Just for info at this stage, Max, but time loss to Checo 39.8, braking 11, 12, 20.”

Verstappen replied, “Yeah, I know mate, the brakes are just s**t!”, to which Lambiase replied: “As I said, it was just information.”

With Hamilton closing down the gap in the closing stages, and the pressure mounting on Verstappen, Lambiase tried to keep his driver informed by saying: “Same pace as Hamilton.”

But Verstappen was having none of it, saying: “Please, no talking under the braking!” and, when the gap shrunk to 3.6 as Lambiase pointed out, Verstappen emphasised with annoyance: “No talking in the braking, man!”

Verstappen held on to cross the line by 2.2 seconds over Hamilton and, during the celebratory messages, Lambiase quickly signed off with just a short message: “Well done, enjoy the celebrations, see you Friday.”

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Christian Horner explains Gianpiero Lambiase radio message

Asked about the strange nature of Lambiase disappearing as soon as the chequered flag was shown, with the race engineer and his driver not seeing each other again until practice for the Mexico City Grand Prix next week, Red Bull team boss Christian Horner explained what was going on.

“Well, it was not a code or anything like that,” he told Sky F1.

“So the marital bliss between the two of them just rolls along!

“He’s had to rush back to the UK, so he was rushing to catch a flight.

“It used to be Helmut [Marko] who left the track early, now it’s the race engineer who’s straight out after the race.”

Verstappen opened up his braking issues in the post-race press conference, saying that he had experienced constant locking of the axles.

“I just couldn’t feel the brakes,” he said.

“I very easily locked the fronts, I tried to adjust it, then it was locking the rears. It was something very weird because, normally, I never really have issues with braking.

“So this is just something that we need to understand why that was today because when you’re locking front or rear, you are also killing your tyres, so that definitely didn’t help today compared to yesterday, because I think yesterday the feeling I had with the car was really amazing.

“Today, it was not that great. But, nevertheless, we still won the race. So that’s the most important. As for talking under braking, when you’re struggling already under braking and you don’t feel that confident, I politely asked to not be spoken to. I said please when I asked!”

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