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Max Verstappen

Verstappen clarifies concerning Marko comments

Max Verstappen has responded to claims made by Dr Helmut Marko that Red Bull's simulator does not correlate with the actual circuits used in F1.

Verstappen Thu Canada
To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen has elaborated on comments made by Dr Helmut Marko underlining a "fundamental" problem for Red Bull.

In doing so, the 26-year-old has in part rejected the notion presented by the Austrian, who feels there is no correlation between the Red Bull simulator and the real tracks on the F1 calendar.

Whilst Red Bull sudden finds itself with close competitors in McLaren and Ferrari, having enjoyed a run of clear dominance over the past two years, the Monaco Grand Prix highlighted fundamental flaws with the RB20 - notably its inability to aggressively use kerbs.

Doing so is key to success around the streets of the principality, and with the performance gap no longer masking Red Bull's deficiency, the issue has come to the fore. What has heightened the problem, is that it was not entirely anticipated by the team.

"It's just that maybe on the simulator, they are probably too good, and gives you a bit of the wrong idea of how to set up the car," Verstappen told media including RacingNews365 when asked about the 81-year-old's comments.

"Some tracks I think we do a better job than others, but honestly, I think if you're asked everyone [the other teams and drivers] that's the same, like it's very hard to nail it all the time."

'It's still a good tool...'

Marko blames the disconnect between the simulator and circuits for the Milton Keynes team's poor form in Monte Carlo.

Verstappen qualified and finished in sixth position, whilst team-mate Sergio Perez was knocked out in Q1 on Saturday and then out of the race entirely on lap one, following a heavy crash with Kevin Magnussen. 

"The fundamental problem is not the circuits," Marko stated to Sky Sports Germany. "It's that the correlation between the simulator and the track doesn't work. On the simulator we drive over the kerbstones without any problems."

The Canadian Grand Prix is also expected to pose issues for Red Bull, as kerb-riding is prevalent around the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. However, Verstappen believes there is merit to using the simulator to inform set-up and approach.

"It's still a good tool, I think," the Dutchman added. "It does help us and we can try a lot of stuff on the simulator. But yeah, some tracks works a bit better than others."

Also interesting:

In the latest episode of the RacingNews365.com podcast, join Ian Parkes, Sam Coop and Nick Golding as they look ahead to the Canadian Grand Prix, Red Bull's struggles potentially continuing and the news that Esteban Ocon will leave Alpine at the end of 2024.

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