Formula 1 Hungarian Grand Prix was Max Verstappen’s fourth retirement of the season with teammate Daniel Ricciardo also having four DNFs which has seriously dented their chances in the championship fight.
Verstappen moved to fifth after starting from seventh when his Reanult engine let go at Hungaroring with a suspected MGU-K failure – much to the frustration of the Dutchman as he started swearing on the radio.
After the race, the Dutchman felt that if Renault had more horsepower and they were pushing to gain performance, the retirements were still acceptable but since the engine is the ‘slowest’ and also unreliable, the excuses just don’t add up.
“I was very angry [of course],” he said. “I mean if we had the most horsepower out there and every two races we would break down then so be it, because we are pushing hard to get power.
“But [in this case], I think we are the slowest out there and the reliability is shit as well. It is ridiculous. There’s not really a reason to talk to the team because it is not their fault [as well], it is just what we get delivered which is at the moment pretty shit.
“I don’t need the reasons [for the failures from Renault], they just need to work harder to deliver at least 70-80 HP more but also reliability. Let’s see what we have to do in Spa. If we have to take penalties, I don’t know yet.”
But then he has since apologised for his comments: “Looking back on yesterday the disappointment is still there. However, I should not have used the words I did in the heat of the moment. Emotions were running high after a good start to the race.
“These frustrations came for a reason, after another unexpected engine failure which have been happening too often over the past few years. We came to Budapest with high expectations and not being able to be competitive made it hard to swallow for us.
“I will go into the summer break hoping we will be back stronger after it.” The Dutchman sits sixth in the drivers’ standings with 105 points while Ricciardo is ahead with 115 – but both are more or less out of contention for a title.
The relationship between Renault and Red Bull has been on the shaky ground for some years, especially with the inability of the French manufacturer to deliver a unit close to that of Mercedes and Ferrari.
For this very reason, Red Bull signed a new deal with Honda which is providing engines to its junior team Toro Rosso. The Red Bull camp has been speaking highly of the Japanese manufacturer’s progress, but it remains to be seen how it plays out in 2019.