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Max Verstappen

Verstappen explains treacherous in-lap that almost cost the Monaco win

The tricky conditions when the rain hit midway through the Monaco Grand Prix resulted in a few near-misses for the Dutchman on his way to victory.

Max Verstappen found the conditions midway through the Monaco Grand Prix "not enjoyable" as he tried to avoid crashing out from the lead.

The Red Bull driver elected to go longer without pitting during his first stint due to the impending rain threat, with Pirelli strategy estimations showing that around Lap 33 was the optimum pit window.

When the rain did hit the track, it meant that Verstappen had to drive through the treacherous conditions on worn tyres.

"If it would have been nice and sunny, I would have stopped and put the Hard tyre on. But we couldn't do that because the risk of rain was around so I had to stay out," Verstappen told media, including RacingNews365.com.

Onboards show the Dutchman hit the barriers at Portier during his pit in-lap, as he struggled to maintain temperature in his slicks.

He added: "With really worn tyres, to go through there was not really enjoyable. I clipped a few barriers, especially on my in-lap, I think. It was very, very difficult."

Verstappen explains time loss to Alonso

A few laps before the rain arrived Verstappen started to lose time to Alonso, with the lead gap reducing to around six seconds from 11 seconds.

The Dutchman said this was due to him wanting to reduce the risk of crashing while out in the lead, as he negotiated the traffic at the back of the field.

"I had a big lead and I didn't want to risk trying to be the same pace or faster and then end up in the wall. You have to be a little bit more careful," he explained.

"It's just [important] not take too much risk but at the same time, of course not drive too slowly. I think I had Lando in my gearbox as well so at one point I was like 'I do need to speed up a bit.'

"It's not a comfortable situation to be in when it's like that here in the wet, but luckily after five laps [I had] to change a few things on the steering wheel as well to just give me a bit of a better balance, and that definitely helped."

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F1 2023 Monaco Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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