Honda confirm Verstappen’s Monza grid penalty

Mark Scott
Max Verstappen Red Bull

Max Verstappen

Honda have confirmed Max Verstappen will be starting the Italian Grand Prix from the back of the grid, along with former team-mate Pierre Gasly.

The Japanese manufacturer began their roll-out of their Spec 4 engine with Alex Albon and Daniil Kvyat getting their hands on it ahead of the Belgium Grand Prix.

Now it is the turn of Verstappen and Gasly to take on some engine penalties at Monza, so all four Red Bull/Toro Rosso drivers can have a clean slate for the following race in Singapore, a track that is expected to suit.

“From a PU point of view, the main development is that we plan to run the Spec 4 PU with all four drivers for the first time, after just Albon and Kvyat ran it in Belgium,” Tanabe said in Honda’s Monza preview.

“For their first race with Spec 4, Gasly and Verstappen will therefore take grid penalties and start from the back of grid, but we believe they can still race strongly on Sunday.

“We gathered useful data in Spa, which we have used to make changes to PU settings and calibration in preparation for this race.

“We will try to maximize the potential of Spec 4 and hope to get another positive result, maintaining the momentum we gained in Spa.”

The prospect of penalties has been looming all week on Verstappen, but he said he had no problem starting from the back at Monza as it is a track you can overtake on.

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