Red Bull not afraid of changing Verstappen’s gearbox – “If it has damage….”

Red Bull is not afraid of changing Max Verstappen’s gearbox at such a crucial point in the championship.

Verstappen suffered a massive setback during qualifying for the Saudi Arabian GP. With his title rival on provisional pole, the Dutchman one-upped him in the first two sectors, and was set to take a fantastic pole position.

However, his stonking lap screeched to a halt when he collided into the wall. The shunt broke his rear right wishbone, which is something his team did not want to see. They only recently gave his car a new gearbox, and now that might need replacing as well.

With only two races to go, every point is crucial. Taking a new gearbox nets the driver a five-place grid penalty. However, Red Bull is not afraid of changing Verstappen’s gearbox for the race to come.

As quoted by Planet F1, Red Bull team advisor Dr. Helmut Marko told ServusTV, “We have to take it apart and look at it.

“We saw it with (Charles) Leclerc in Monte Carlo. He had a similar impact. They decided not to change and then bang, on the warm-up lap the consequences became clear.

“We are so fast that we don’t take any risks. If the gearbox has damage or glimpses of that, we will change it. It’s difficult to overtake here, but still.”

Unlucky

Marko explained how the crash happened, and why it is a big blow to them on a track like Jeddah.

“He was four tenths ahead at that point, which is an eternity here,” he said.

“We saw that when he braked, the left front wheel locked. As a result, he no longer had grip and then slid out. That’s what happened.

“In retrospect, you could have said ‘okay, Max, you’re already so far ahead, take it easy,’ but that’s not Max, that’s not us. When someone is on a lap like that…and it was nuances.

“It was a matter of hundredths with the braking, and that it had such a stupid effect,” he concluded.

Read more: Ralf delivers scathing rant on Mercedes and Red Bull – “Lodge a protest or shut up!”

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