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Max Verstappen

Verstappen offers bizarre 'Mario Kart' idea for new F1 rules

The new 2026 F1 rules have been published and Max Verstappen has an unusual idea, offered in jest.

Verstappen Imola race
To news overview © XPBimages

Max Verstappen has wondered, in jest, whether the new 2026 Formula 1 technical regulations should come with "bananas" a la Mario Kart.

On Thursday, the FIA unveiled the long-awaited chassis regulations for the 2026 season, to go with the power unit regulations which have been known since 2022.

The main takeaways are that the new machines will feature active aerodynamics, beefed-up electrical systems and a new Manuel Override Mode (MOM) which will effectively replace DRS. 

Offering his first reflections of the new rules ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix, Verstappen joked that maybe some obstacles from the popular video game might also come in handy.

"What they have done is change a bit how you use the energy on the straights, and the more simulations that are run, everyone will get a better understanding," Verstappen explained to media including RacingNews365.

"With the active aerodynamics, it is mainly to try and get around the issue on the straights [of downshifting], but if it is something that is controlled, I guess it is the same for everybody. 

"I don't know how effective [the Manuel Override Mode] will be, as it is something that I haven't seen yet how effective it is going to be. 

"Maybe you need some bananas..."

Verstappen also urged caution about the new driver-activated boost and the impact it would have, believing as more research was done into the rules, it would become clearer.

"If it works well, it works well, but I find it a bit difficult at the moment to pinpoint because it is going to follow a lot on how well you can follow as well, and then how effective the boost is, and how slow the recharge mode is.

"There are a lot of things I still need to really understand - it is not just me - it is everyone who is designing or getting the rules together. Everything is going to work well, but it is definitely more complicated."

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