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Verstappen hits out at "worthless" Grand Prix

NEWS STORY
26/03/2018

As Fernando Alonso found his mirrors full of Max Verstappen for lap after lap after lap after lap, the Spaniard was advised that the last time a Red Bull had made a successful pass (Ricciardo) it was in Turn 13. It might have also been pointed out to the two-time world champion that it was one of the only passes of the entire race.

"I would have preferred for the last few laps not to have had him behind me, because he's always a threat," said the Spaniard at race end, "he's a very aggressive driver on overtaking moves. I knew I had to be very careful and make no mistakes. But it was fun!"

Fun for him maybe, but for the watching fans who had witnessed 50% less overtaking in 2017 than in the previous season it was pretty much a question of; same old, same old.

Despite the introduction of a third DRS zone - the sport's artificial attempt at circumventing one of its biggest turn-offs - the passes were few and far between.

At the end of a frustrating afternoon, Verstappen summed up the feelings of many when he described the race as worthless, admitting that if he'd been watching it on TV he would have switched off.

"It was very boring," said the hard-charging youngster. "You do your best to try something, and I was in DRS range all the time, but there is nothing you can do."

Asked how it must have been for fans watching on TV, he replied: "Completely worthless... I would have turned off the TV."

Focussing on everyone else bar Kevin Magnussen, the Red Bull driver lost out to the Dane at the start and thus began the first part of a very frustrating afternoon. In his determination to pass the Haas the youngster's enthusiasm finally got the better of him, a 360 spin at Turn dropping him further down the order behind Hulkenberg. Later in the race, the Dutchman suffered similar frustration as he trailed Alonso.

"You can't overtake," he insisted. "Look at Hamilton and Vettel, the same story with Alonso. They were also much slower, but you can't pass them. You try, but it doesn't make any difference. Even if you are one-and-a-half seconds faster, it's still not possible to overtake."

Asked whether it was the circuit itself which was the problem, the youngster echoed what almost all race fans have been saying for years.

"It is more down to the cars, because there used to be no problem with overtaking," he said.

Check out our Sunday gallery from Melbourne, here.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by gwinasia, 02/04/2018 7:06

"'...that it was one of the only passes of the entire race'.... erm, seems logical, poor poor writing. This comment is one of the only comments of the entire article"

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Stitch431, 27/03/2018 19:01

"First of all there was something on the back of Verstappen's car that broke off way before the spin and Horner was amazed he was able to keep the car on track and up to speed in the first place. So that had nothing to do with over eagerness. Then what he says is the problem of drag which does not start when a driver is within a second (that was the status quo in 2016) but since last year this starts within 2! seconds of the car before you.
That is why DRS is not working anymore either and overtaking, especially on a circuit like Melbourne has become impossible. Does thsi mean the circuit is bad? No as in the past cars were bale to overtake there. Solution: strongly reduce the impact of aerodynamics on the car and allow the teams to develop ground effect instead. To make sure no one is doing somethin illegal, invest in a bridge and put the cars up there to check them right before the race. If soeone breaks the rules: same penalty for everyone, to be decided upon beforehand and not randomly afterwards."

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3. Posted by yakker, 27/03/2018 9:41

"FORMULA BORING, nuff said."

Rating: Negative (-2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

4. Posted by danielmb, 26/03/2018 20:37

"This is not a new phenomenon. For the past several years the races have been won or lost on Saturday during qualifying or on Sunday during pit stops or yellow flags. I pay far more attention to qualifying coverage and usually only pay sporadic attention to race broadcasts. With the ESPN/Sky coverage nightmare and the continuously inane babbling of the Sky announcers, it seems best to experience the race coverage while napping with the sound off!"

Rating: Negative (-1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

5. Posted by LVguy, 26/03/2018 17:53

"Where it went all wrong?, it wasn’t the race, but the awfull sound feed and quality provided by either sky tv or espn. The commentators voices were overshadowed by track noise and barley audible. It was the most annoying race you had to listen to. "

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6. Posted by ZJAY, 26/03/2018 16:58

"Max is a great driver and will get better. Can't forget his drive in the rain last year, just brilliant. In Melbourne he drove like a frustrated teenager who did not get things his way. I am happy that Ricciardo came ahead of him. "

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7. Posted by Mikee7, 26/03/2018 16:01

"What a good comment from Max and we agree. We did switch off...no overtaking, glorious views of the halo and not the track from the onboard cameras and no sign of a driver due to the err.....halo. No joined up thinking there then. It was so boring, it was not worth watching. Something is seriously wrong if the only way to overtake someone during a race is to speed in the approach to pits under a VSC."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

8. Posted by FQITW, 26/03/2018 16:00

"Max V
Well done for speaking out-the fans will always listen to you before Todt,Brawn and Liberty.
We all want action but not in 2021 so maybe the F.I.A. could immediately ban DRS. After all it was proved not to work on Sunday and is now therefore rendered irrelevant.
No?"

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9. Posted by Ro, 26/03/2018 15:53

"Get rid of the complex front and rear wings. How are Indy cars able to go up the chuff of the guy in front, and at least 10% faster than an F1 car? Now there is a simple way to cut costs in one fell swoop. As far as the halo, what a joke! How long before someone is hurt by it ? I truly hope it never happens, but if it does, will the FIA be sued? I watched the first 5 minutes of the start and end of the race, whereas in MTOGP I was glued to the screen!"

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

10. Posted by Motorsport-fan, 26/03/2018 14:37

"How about reduced aero for "street circuits" or say an FIA package for a front and rear wing so cars can follow and pass and what they have now for traditional tracks. "

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11. Posted by nonickname, 26/03/2018 13:53

"It is pointless trying to change things.. the drivers can't.Now you can't even see them in the cars anyway.
I watch MotoGP every race. Here you get pure adrenaline. Last corner overtakes every race and a bunch of riders fighting for every point available.
Oh and the are still using pit girls :)
The only form of motor sport that is not frog infested and therefore still pure."

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12. Posted by NS Biker, 26/03/2018 13:40

"At least we can revel in the race coverage from ESPN.
Next step is to make DRS active at 3 seconds back and give drivers unlimited use of the artificial system. But then, isn't moveable aero not allowed.?
Maybe then there will be more spins.
"

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13. Posted by Tony Soprano, 26/03/2018 13:22

"It's amazing how the powers that be who have been saying for years that they want a better show and more overtaking seem incapable of listening to the fans who obviously understand the sport better than the powers that be.

In what I will call the "pre-excessive-aero" world where millions weren't spent on ridiculous winglets and wind tunnels, F1 cars actually looked like race cars, passing was a matter of the skill of the driver. Fans hace been commenting here for what seems like forever to get rid of all the aero aids, the appendages, mini-wings (whatever you want to call them). SIMPLIFY the cars! Make driver skill mean something. It's almost like the FIA should be renamed "Uber" with its vision of self-driving cars. "

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