Latest Max Verstappen tiff with race engineer plays out during Monza practice

Jamie Woodhouse
Max Verstappen with Gianpiero Lambiase. Austria July 2023.

Max Verstappen looks over data with race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase. Austria July 2023.

Max Verstappen and his race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase were at it again during FP2 ahead of the Italian Grand Prix as Verstappen pushed for a second qualifying simulation.

With the Alternative Tyre Allocation [ATA] system in use once more at Monza, reducing the number of tyre sets available to the drivers, it meant strict run plans were more important than ever for the teams and drivers to get the data they need ahead of qualifying.

Verstappen though, having been unable to set a representative time on his qualifying simulation, was keen to take matters into his own hands and stay out to get a better “read” of the situation.

Additional reporting by Thomas Maher and Sam Cooper

Max Verstappen and Gianpiero Lambiase in tense exchange

Understandably, that did not sit too well with ‘GP’ as Verstappen attempted to stray from the run plan, leading into the following radio conversation:

Verstappen: “We’re not going to try again? Because I had a s*** read.”

GP: “It’s not qualifying, Max.”

Verstappen: “Yeah I know, but I want to have a proper read.”

After the session this debate sparked back into life when Lambiase, with a strong hint of sarcasm, asked Verstappen: “Did you learn anything?”

With Verstappen replying: “No, not really”, the response of “well done” came from his race engineer. recommends

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Red Bull team boss Christian Horner previously shed some light on the relationship between Verstappen and Lambiase, one far from tense, likening GP to actor Jason Statham, not only due to looks, but since a strong character is needed to keep Verstappen under control.

“I mean GP and Max have been together since the first race that Max stepped into the car,” Horner told media including

“Max is a demanding customer. And you’ve got to be a strong character to deal with that.

“GP, he’s our Jason Statham equivalent, they certainly look alike.

“He deals with him firmly but fairly. There’s a great respect between the two of them and that comes out of a mutual trust that you must have between an engineer.

“There’s a great bond between the two of them and a great trust between the two.”

Verstappen is chasing a record-breaking 10th victory in a row heading into this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.

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