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Verstappen: 2024 was never going to be like last year

Verstappen: 2024 was never going to be like last year

Verstappen: 2024 was never going to be like last year

Max Verstappen insisted following a tough Monaco Grand Prix for Red Bull that he was always aware that the 2024 Formula 1 season was never going to be like his exceptional 2023 campaign.

Red Bull have been struggling in the past three F1 races – Miami, Imola, and Monaco – to recreate their dominant form which they have enjoyed since 2022.

In 2023 Verstappen and Red Bull had an unprecedented run, the team winning all but one of the 22 races – Carlos Sainz won in Singapore – while the Dutchman took 19 wins out of his team’s 21.

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But 2024 has been a far cry from its predecessor, as despite still leading both Championships, that has not come easily for Verstappen and Red Bull as the like of McLaren and Ferrari are pushing them hard, with the RB20 seemingly more vulnerable than its older sibling the all conquering RB19.

Red Bull boss Christian Horner has repeatedly pointed out that the car designs were going to confirm with the cars’ pace converging as well, and now Verstappen added that 2023 was an exception.

Speaking to the media after the Monaco GP, the reigning F1 Champion said: “It [2024] was never going to be like last year, to have a season like that is quite rare.

“I always knew that this year was going to be a little bit different but also I don’t really think about championship positions or whatever with so many races left. Some races are a bit better for us and some are a bit worse for us. At the end of the day it all works out.

“The cars are much closer, some cars work better on street circuits and some work better in fast corners rather than low speed corners. It will swing a bit,” he pointed out.

The RB20 doesn’t like kerbs and bumps

Asked about the weakness of his RB20, Verstappen said: “Any track that is bumpy or has kerbs, or you have to ride a lot of kerbs, so the street circuits will probably be a little bit tricky but hopefully by then we have a little bit of understanding of what is going on.

“We have to wait and see,” he continued when asked about the kerbs in Canada, “new surface as well I think, that might also give us some surprises but it is probably also not going to be our strongest weekend because of that but probably a little bit better than here.”

The triple F1 Champion insisted Red Bull racing are resting on their laurels, he said: “We take everything very seriously but sometimes things are not very easy to fix but we are working flat-out on it.

“First we need to understand what it is, we don’t now a the moment so this is something that we have to find first,” Verstappen concluded when asked how fast the issue can be fixed.

Verstappen currently leads the F1 Drivers’ Standings by 31 points from Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.

(Reporting by Agnes Carlier from Monaco)