Toto Wolff reveals only way Red Bull can now be denied undefeated F1 2023

Jamie Woodhouse
Max Verstappen leads a train of F1 cars at Monza.

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen leads a train of cars during practice for the Italian Grand Prix.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says Red Bull will go on to win every F1 2023 grand prix unless they “screw it up themselves”.

Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz gave their Tifosi hope that victory was possible for the team at Monza by pipping Red Bull’s Max Verstappen to pole, the runaway Championship leader searching for a record 10th grand prix win in a row.

But, while Sainz was able to keep the lead from Verstappen until Lap 15, from there the Dutchman made the overtake and drove on to victory, even withstanding late reliability concerns which forced him to drop his pace.

Additional reporting by Thomas Maher

Red Bull must “screw themselves” now to lose

Mercedes were forced to settle for a P5 and P6 finish at Monza, George Russell crossing the line ahead of Lewis Hamilton, with both drivers picking up five-second penalties.

Russell’s came for cutting the opening chicane while battling Alpine’s Esteban Ocon, while Hamilton was judged to have caused his collision with McLaren’s Oscar Piastri which left the latter needing a new front wing.

But, with Ferrari having held Verstappen up for 15 laps, Wolff was asked by media including PlanetF1.com whether any team can hand Red Bull a defeat in F1 2023, with the Austrian outfit having collected all 14 grand prix wins on offer so far.

To Wolff’s mind, Mercedes, Ferrari, Aston Martin and McLaren in that chasing pack are going to need Red Bull to cost themselves the win to have any hope.

“No, I think they need to screw it up themselves in order not to win every race this season,” he declared. “That, by the way, that’s a record I would think that’s a good one!”

That last part is in reference to comments which Wolff made following Verstappen’s record-breaking 10th win in a row, Wolff dismissing that as something to look pretty on “Wikipedia”.

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Wolff would then go into further detail on this view, describing this latest Verstappen record as “completely irrelevant”.

“For me, these kinds of records are completely irrelevant,” he said.

“They were irrelevant in our good days in Mercedes. I don’t know how many races we won or in a row. I didn’t even know that there was a count on how many races in a row you win.

“Therefore, asking me for commenting on some achievement is difficult because it never played a role in my whole life.

“But the result itself shows that a great driver in a great car is competing on an extremely high level.”

Formula 1 now has a free weekend with the European leg of the season complete, before returning for the Singapore Grand Prix.

Read next: Toto Wolff dismisses Max Verstappen win record with ‘Wikipedia’ jibe