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Red Bull: “At some point the streak would have been broken anyway …”

What world championship leader Max Verstappen has to say about the race result in Singapore and how Red Bull are dealing with the end of their winning streak in the 2023 Formula One season

Red Bull’s winning streak in the 2023 Formula One season has come to an end as Max Verstappen only managed a fifth place finish at the Singapore Grand Prix. But after P11 in qualifying, the improvement in the race is no consolation for Verstappen. He tells ServusTV: “It went better, but it was still bad. “

Red Bull never had a chance of winning in Singapore, despite having opted for the alternative strategy of hard tyres in the first stint compared to the front runners. However, an early safety car phase after the accident of Williams driver Logan Sargeant did not allow this tactic to work.

Or as Verstappen put it: “We were a bit unlucky with the safety car. Of course it came out at the wrong moment. That was a pity. And also with the virtual safety car [a few laps later] we were unlucky. “

The Red Bull pace only fits towards the end of the race

Only “the last stint” was “already good”, says Verstappen. Before that, he had changed from hard to medium under green and rolled up the field from behind on fresh tyres in the last third of the race. From P15 after the pit stop to P5 at the finish. And in the end he was only 0.264 seconds behind Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc, who finished fourth.

For Red Bull team boss Christian Horner, the final phase was the only bright spot in the Singapore Grand Prix: “You could see the pace there. We were very strong,” he tells ServusTV, adding: “Without the safety car period, we would have been in the four, five cars fighting for the win at the end.”

Horner also emphasises: the race had developed in exactly the wrong way for Red Bull. “The safety car could hardly have come onto the track at a worse time. Because it practically gave the people in front of us a free stop. We, on the other hand, had a problem with the used tyres after the safety car period and, on top of that, had to pit under green,” Horner said.

What Horner says about the end of the winning streak

Whether he was sad that the winning streak had come to an end this weekend? Horner waves it off and says: “At some point the streak would have been broken anyway. The fact that we have won 15 Grands Prix in a row is an outstanding achievement.” Now it’s a question of Red Bull being able to “fight” again in Japan.

But will Red Bull be back to their usual form of the season so far? Verstappen sees the Suzuka Circuit as “normally a better track for us” and Horner also speaks of a “more traditional layout” at the Japanese Grand Prix.

Red Bull’s period of weakness in Singapore is “hopefully not a problem that will drag on until next weekend”, the team boss said. “Suzuka is a different kind of challenge. And hopefully we can come back strong there.”

Last year at least, the Japanese circuit was a good place for Red Bull, with Verstappen winning then from pole position ahead of Sergio Perez in the sister car. In Singapore 2023, Perez finished the race from 13th on the grid to eighth at the finish.

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