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Gianpiero Lambiase

At Red Bull Racing, Gianpiero Lambiase serves as the race engineer for Max Verstappen. Previously, Lambiase worked with drivers such as Giancarlo Fisichella, Daniil Kvyat and Sergio Perez. Team principal Christian Horner stressed that Verstappen and Lambiase have excellent chemistry and are like "a married couple".

Gianpiero-Lambiase-Red-Bull-F1-Verstappen-RacingNews365 © XPBimages

Gianpiero Lambiase F1

Although the name Gianpiero Lambiase has a Southern European sound, the engineer was born in London in 1981. However, he does indeed have Italian ancestry. Within the team and outside, he is known as 'GP'. As a young lad, he was an avid supporter of football club Chelsea. Lambiase is also an alumnus of the prestigious University of Cambridge, where he happened to study at the same institution where Red Bull's strategic mastermind Hannah Schmitz received her education. The remarkable thing is that Lambiase did not originally study for a career as an engineer, but trained as an actor.

However, that turned out not to be the path he wanted to take. Lambiase began his F1 career in 2005 with the Jordan team and stayed there for 10 years, even as the team underwent several transformations and became known as Midland, Spyker and Force India. In 2008, as performance engineer, he helped Giancarlo Fisichella to Force India's first pole position and podium finish in Belgium in 2009.

In 2010, he became race engineer for Vitantonio Liuzzi and, after his departure, took on the same role for Paul di Resta. He stayed with Di Resta for three years until Di Resta was replaced by Sergio Perez in 2014. Lambiase then made the move to Red Bull Racing.

Gianpiero Lambiase Red Bull

At Red Bull, he became race engineer for Daniil Kvyat in 2015 and retained this position when Kvyat was replaced by Max Verstappen. As race engineer, he is responsible for all communications from the track to the driver and for tuning the F1 car. Lambiase is known for his direct and precise radio communications, something Verstappen has often praised.

In 2022, Lambiase became head of race engineering at Red Bull, while retaining his role as race engineer for Verstappen.

Lambiase and Verstappen

The day after clinching his first world title, Verstappen spoke at length to Dutch TV channel Ziggo Sport. He also highlighted his relationship with his engineer Lambiase: "Yes, I could call him in the middle of the night if I needed to. We have a fantastic collaboration. We are sometimes quite strict with each other, which is good. He should be able to tell me when I'm wrong, and vice versa. That's how I've always wanted it. Helmut Marko also enjoys our interaction; he listens in and appreciates our communication."

Despite these positive words, there have been times when the duo did clash during a race. Like at the 2022 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, where Verstappen summoned his engineer to shut up. Afterwards, he regretted that, Christian ho revealed. "Verstappen realised he had been too harsh. He sought out Lambiase, gave him an ice cream and apologised. Max just wants to win, and that's fine as long as it stays constructive."

Horner added how the duo really get along: "Lambiase is adept at managing Verstappen during races and qualifying. There is mutual respect and trust. He communicates mainly with the driver and is excellent at dealing with the pressure Verstappen brings. If you want to be Max's engineer, you have to be solid."

Max Verstappen Gianpiero Lambiase GP Belgium 2023

Verstappen and Lambiase were not on the same page at the 2023 Belgian Grand Prix either. As the first set of pit stops approached, a discussion started between Verstappen and his engineer. Over the on-board radio, Lambiase said, "Max, think carefully, use your head." At that point, Verstappen inquired whether he and Perez would use the same race strategy. "Does this apply to both cars or what?" he responded. Lambiase did not elaborate: "Just follow my instructions." Verstappen, however, was not satisfied: "No, I want to know if this applies to both cars," he remarked, audibly frustrated.

The conversation continued: "Max, please follow my instructions and have confidence in that. Thank you," Lambiase replied with an audible sigh. This was just the introduction to several remarkable radio exchanges between the two. Later, when rain was forecast, a new dialogue emerged. "Okay Max, we are expecting rain within 9 or 10 minutes. What do you think? Can we wear it out or do we have to go to the pits? If we want to beat Leclerc, we have to pit now," the message from the pit wall read. Verstappen replied gruffly: "How could I see the weather radar? Not a clue."

By the end of the day, the world champion was nevertheless back on the highest podium with the trophy in his hands, and all previous friction seemed to have been settled. Shortly before the summer break, Horner reiterated his insights on the dynamic between the two. "Lambiase excels in guiding Verstappen during the race weekend and qualifying sessions. There is mutual respect and trust between the two parties. While 'GP' is also in contact with me at the pit wall, his main communication channel is with the driver himself. There is a strong basis of respect and trust between them. To be Verstappen's engineer, you have to stand firm. It is not an easy task. Many engineers would fail under this pressure, but 'GP' is excellent at handling it, both in his attitude and communication style."

Jean Pierre Lambiase

The name of Verstappen's engineer is regularly misspelled. Where the Red Bull chief's name is Gianpiero Lambiase, many people often write Jean Pierre Lambiase.

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