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Max Verstappen

Verstappen not rushing into judgement on RB20

Max Verstappen is waiting to properly drive the RB20 before judging Red Bull's 2024 car.

Verstappen Brazil
To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen isn't getting ahead of himself prior to the start of the 2024 F1 season, with him still having more simulator work to do before the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

The Dutchman heads into the new campaign having demolished the field in 2023 on his way to a third consecutive Drivers' Championship. He won the title with ease and shattered countless records along the way, including the records for the most wins in a season, most points scored and most consecutive victories.

For someone to take the fight to the 26-year-old and Red Bull, they have a mountain to climb, a challenge which could further increase depending on the strength of the side's 2024 car.

Red Bull were the final team to launch their new car – the RB20 – before conducting a shakedown test at Silverstone. Whilst this did offer Verstappen a chance to drive the car, his first opportunity to push it to its limit will come this week during pre-season testing.

It's widely expected that Red Bull and Verstappen will be unstoppable once again given how untouchable the partnership was last year, although the Dutch driver admits topping his 2023 achievements might not be possible.

More sim work required

"Well, I mean, these kinds of things are very tough, I think to top. I think it's also not our goal," Verstappen told select media including RacingNews365. "I think it's just about trying to deliver another very competitive car.

"And from my side, of course, I'll try to deliver the best I can. But that depends on a lot of things that have to come together. So I guess only time will tell how quick we are.

"And, of course, also around us, people are learning more and more. It's not always that it's up to us how great the season is going to be. Because if you have more natural competition with different teams, it's even harder to win races."

As mentioned, this week's pre-season test in Bahrain will represent Verstappen's first chance to really explore the limits of the RB20 in real life, something he's also yet to do in the simulator.

"I haven't really done a lot of work on the total car, like everything together, because we're constantly working on development bits," admitted Verstappen. "So I still need to do that a little bit more.

"But again, I prefer to, of course, always drive the car in real life first, to then have more accurate feedback for the sim. But so far, everyone has been happy with the sim driving as well."

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RESULTS 2024 F1 Chinese Grand Prix