Criticism of Red Bull strategy: 'Verstappen just gets away with it'

21-09-2021 13:32 | Updated: 21-09-2021 13:38
by GPblog.com
F1 News
Criticism of Red Bull strategy: 'Verstappen just gets away with it'

It is the big question for the upcoming Russian Grand Prix. Is Max Verstappen going to use a new engine this weekend and thus have to start at the back of the grid in the race? A strategic choice for Red Bull that may also have an additional benefit.

Penalty for Verstappen

One thing is for sure, Verstappen will not start from the front row of the grid in Sochi. As the Dutchman was blamed for the crash with Lewis Hamilton in Monza, the world championship leader was given a three-place grid penalty. In addition, Verstappen is likely to have a new engine this weekend, which will also give him a penalty and mean he will have to start from the back of the grid anyway.

During his live stream on YouTube, Marc Priestley is asked for his view on the possible engine change and grid penalty for Verstappen. "That grid penalty of three places could be negated if Red Bull decides to have an engine penalty imposed in the next race, which is going to happen anyway this season. This is a circuit where that might be worthwhile. They could overturn the three-place grid penalty and I suspect that could happen," believes the former McLaren engineer.

Verstappen gets away with penalty

The engine change means Verstappen will be at the back of the grid anyway. Whether or not Verstappen would have received a grid penalty for the crash at Monza no longer matters then. "That's definitely something that has been criticised," said Priestley. "In that way, Verstappen does just get away with the grid penalty for the infraction of the previous race. Of course, starting at the back is a huge penalty in itself, but they would have to do that at some point anyway."

Priestley also thinks he already knows what Red Bull's strategy will be this weekend. "It could be that they will drive on Friday, to see how well they perform. And make a strategic decision based on that. That's probably what they're trying to do."

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