Miami GP: Max Verstappen reflects on 'painful' Friday hampered by reliability issues

Max Verstappen in Miami

Reigning Formula 1 world champion Max Verstappen has labelled Friday’s running at the Miami Grand Prix as extremely painful, with reliability issues hampering the amount of laps he could get in around F1’s newest circuit.

Practice is important at any race weekend but that ramps up at a brand new track, with drivers only experiencing the Miami configuration via simulators before yesterday afternoon.

Indeed, physical mileage is key as we head towards qualifying today, and Max will be hoping FP3 this afternoon can provide him with that, after a couple of issues in both FP1 and, more significantly FP2, limited the amount of laps he could complete on Friday.

A hydraulics issue brought his second session to an end early, just after the half-hour mark, and after the day’s running had been completed the Dutchman was suitably frank speaking to the press when reflecting on the situation.

“Just not a good day,” he said via Sky Sports.

“Of course, these days are extremely painful, especially on a track like this where you want to be out there and learn the track and get up to speed. I basically did four, five fast laps today… that’s not what you want.

“They were hydraulics issues. As soon as I went out of the pits, I couldn’t really steer, like I was locked, and also the brakes were on fire… so a lot of problems.

“Of course, I’ll try to catch up but it’s just not ideal, everyone is more into their running. Not only that, we have no information on the car and what we have to do, so yeah it’s extremely painful.

“We just have to look at ourselves. I don’t care what happens on the track with red flags… we could have done a lot more today.”

Max Verstappen in the Red Bull
MIAMI, FLORIDA – MAY 06: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (1) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB18 in the Pitlane during practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Miami at the Miami International Autodrome on May 06, 2022 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Work to do for Max, then, who will be hoping that the reliability ghouls of Bahrain and Melbourne are not going to return to haunt him this weekend in Miami.

When he has finished a race he has finished first, and it’s clear the RB18 has great pace, but it’s also apparent some teething issues remain.

Of course, it’s better that that happens in practice where Red Bull have time to get on top of things, and we’ll see later on this evening UK-time just how well they have solved these latest issues, with qualifying taking place at 9pm BST.

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