Horner: Verstappen Was a “Bit Upset” After F1 Season Opener Loss to Hamilton

Max Verstappen had a near-perfect weekend in Bahrain. The Red Bull driver was brilliant in the practice sessions, nailed qualifying, and drove a brilliant race. Yet, somehow, the Dutchman ended up finishing in second place to Lewis Hamilton.

A big turning point in the race was when Verstappen had overtaken Hamilton in the dying laps but had to give backtrack position since he did so by exceeding track limits. Following that incident, Red Bull team boss, Christian Horner, reveals how the Dutchman reacted.

Horner intriguingly revealed that Verstappen wasn’t too livid with what had happened. In fact, the Dutchman accepted his mistake. But having learned just how much the two Mercedes cars got away with track limit breaches in the race, he was a bit angry.

SAO PAULO, BRAZIL: Second place finisher Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing looks on in parc ferme during the Formula One Grand Prix of Brazil at Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Pho to by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

Horner said, “He was very sporting about that, obviously frustrated to have lost the race. He knew he got the advantage there.

“I think he was a bit upset when he saw the amount of abuse that had been earlier in the race with those track limits. But that’s racing, that’s the way it is.”

Silver lining from Bahrain GP despite Max Verstappen finishing in second

Although the end result wasn’t quite what Red Bull would have desired on a weekend they dominated, it isn’t all doom and gloom in the Austrian team’s paddock. Instead of being a pessimist, Horner was rather optimistic about what the future holds for the team.

Formula One F1. Bahrain Grand Prix. Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in action during the race REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

He said, “We lost on that day, but we’ve taken away confidence. We’ve got a good car, we’ve got a good engine behind us as well. (We are) Looking forward really to the challenges of the next 22 races.”

From their display in Bahrain, it certainly looks as though F1 fans will finally get to witness a fight for not just the Drivers’ championship but also the Constructors’ championship.

To win the former championship, one can rely on Verstappen delivering the goods, week in week out. However, for the latter, Red Bull will need Sergio Perez to perform to the levels of Daniel Ricciardo. The Australian has suggested that the team struggled to replace him since his departure, but can Perez finally be Ricciardo’s rightful heir? We shall soon find out.

Also Read: ‘That’s Why Hamilton Won In Bahrain’- Schumacher Explains Where Red Bull Lost the Plot