Max Verstappen admitted that he was not sure if he would be able to finish the Australian Grand Prix because of reliability issues.

Verstappen was forced to retire from the race on lap 39 due to a mechanical issue. It is his second retirement in the first three races of the season and the reigning champion is now 6th in the standings.

Verstappen states that being able to finish races is now more important to him than the title fight.

“We’re already miles behind, so I don’t even want to think about a championship fight at the moment – I think it is more important to finish races,” he told Sky Sports.

“I mean, today was, in general, just a bad day again, not really having the pace, so I was just managing my tires to try and bring it to the end.

“It looked like quite an easy P2 anyway, and I knew I could not fight Charles, so there was no point to try and put pressure on him.

“But we didn’t even finish the race, so it’s pretty frustrating and unacceptable.

“I knew there was a problem, so it was always going to be a question mark of finishing the race.

“I mean, these kinds of things, if you want to fight for the title, cannot happen.”

The Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner suspects that an issue related with fuel has led to Verstappen’s retirement.

“We don’t know what the issue is yet. I don’t think it’s actually engine-related,” he commented.

“I think it might be a fuel issue, but we need to get the car back. We need to be able to look at what exactly happened.

“Until we get the car back, we don’t have the data [or the] info. [It’s] pretty frustrating.”

Hi everyone! My name is Anton, I am 19 years old and I am an aspiring motorsports journalist. I love motorsports for those emotions and excitement it brings.