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Clutch issue damaged pace in Verstappen’s first stint, says Marko

AUSTIN, TEXAS – OCTOBER 24: Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain driving the (44) Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team Mercedes W12 leads Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (33) Red Bull Racing RB16B Honda during the F1 Grand Prix of USA at Circuit of The Americas on October 24, 2021 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Red Bull’s advisor Helmut Marko revealed a clutch bite point issue damaged Verstappen’s pace through the first stint.


  • Marko said the first stint issues were not on Verstappen, but on a faulty clutch bite point.

What he said:

  • “We were shaking the whole race. Unfortunately with the start, it wasn’t with us. There was a fault with the clutch bite point, it wasn’t Max’s fault. As a result, in the first stint, we couldn’t drive the pace we wanted.”
  • “The undercut worked in hindsight,” he said about the strategy, “but we saw that we were too slow in the middle stint. Then we made the consideration: two or three stops?.”
  • “Max was incredible in how he saved those tires.”
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