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DRS issue cost Verstappen shot at pole

NEWS STORY
22/05/2022

Max Verstappen reveals that it was a DRS issue that compromised his final qualifying run.

Taking his traditional place at the back of the field, after Charles Leclerc had recovered from his earlier spin and blitzed the timesheets to take provisional pole, attention turned to title rival Max Verstappen.

However, reporting a loss of power, the world champion was told to pit, his quest for pole over before it had even begun.

"A lot of people improved on the second run, which is quite normal," he subsequently told reporters. "But my DRS didn't open, so it felt like a loss of power because of the drag.

"It's a shame," he admitted, "otherwise of course we have at least an opportunity to see what you can do. Overall, for us, this whole qualifying and weekend, I think it was a bit more difficult for us to really find a good balance in the car."

With Leclerc dipping into the 1:18s for the first time, asked if he felt he really had a shot at pole, Verstappen admitted: That's difficult to tell.

"Ferrari brought updates that probably helped them a bit on lap time, so for us not really bringing anything it was a bit more tricky," he added. "But let's see tomorrow. I think our long runs were quite decent, so hopefully tomorrow we can at least be a bit close."

Throughout the Barcelona weekend, Ferrari has admitted concern over tyre degradation, a factor that could once again play into Red Bull's hands (hooves?).

"The last few races, we seemed pretty decent on the tyres," said Verstappen. "Of course, tomorrow again it will be very hot, very warm, this track will be quite tough to pass on but let's see. Hopefully of course our car will be again a bit kinder on the tyres but a bit difficult to tell at the moment."

Check out our Sunday gallery from Barcelona, here.

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