Verstappen does not think 2022 cars are less reliable

Sam Cooper
Max Verstappen gestures with his hand. Barcelona, May 2022.

Red Bull's Max Verstappen gestures with his hand as he answers a question. Barcelona, May 2022.

Max Verstappen said he does not think the 2022 cars are any less reliable than previous years despite another high profile retirement during the Spanish Grand Prix.

The Red Bull driver is no stranger to DNFs this season having retired in two of the opening six races of the 2022 season and in Barcelona he again had difficulties with his car as the DRS failed to open.

But it was Charles Leclerc who became the latest casualty of an unfortunate retirement as, having led from the off, his Ferrari lost power not even halfway through the race.

Verstappen though does not believe the 2022 cars are any less reliable than their predecessors.

“It shouldn’t be really car related because like the engines and stuff are pretty much the same,” he replied during the post-race press conference when asked if the cars this year were less reliable. “Of course, the fuel has changed a little bit, but it’s a bit weird.

“Also from our side, of course, we had already two retirements where before we were always really strong on reliability, so it’s a bit difficult to tell. It’s also not major issues that we had.

“I don’t know, of course, about Ferrari, but from our side it’s little things and yeah, we are trying to be on top of that, but I don’t think it’s specifically car related.”

Verstappen cut a frustrated figure himself during the race his DRS failed to open on a number of occasions. He was heard over the team radio shouting “We can’t even make the f***ing DRS work, unbelievable!” and Christian Horner said he thought the Dutchman had a bit of “road rage.”

“There was a little road rage going on at that point which is understandable because he must have hit the button 50 times on one straight,” Horner told Sky Sports.

“It is something we need to get on top of.”

Helmut Marko described the outburst as one from an “emotional driver” but said the Red Bull team were okay with that.

“You have to calm him down,” he told the Dutch edition of “I mean, we were surprised by this problem ourselves and you still have to make the best of it.

“When he didn’t press the button on the kerb anymore, it worked properly. He’s just an emotional racer, that’s alright.”

“We instructed him to remain calm and to only press once. Before that he pressed the button several times, so that the DRS then closed again. Thank God it then opened at the right moment.”


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