Max Verstappen, Ferrari, Verstappen discussed on The Autosport Podcast
Coming home first and second in the first round of the 2022 Formula One World Championship Ferrari not only back on the top step, but also a one two full of clerk, winning the Bahrain Grand Prix, second Carlos Sainz Jr. and third, Lewis Hamilton in the first Mercedes followed by his teammate George, Russell in fourth butts, the story of the race, of course, can't be told without the two Red Bull retirements. First of all, Max Verstappen after the final pit stop suffering from a steering issue which he seemed to be driving around, he said after the race finished that it was almost on drivable in the fast corners when the car was loading up. And at the time of recording this podcast around 9 o'clock on Sunday Night, we think it was a steering track rod issue, possibly bent or maybe misaligned when it was dropped down from its jacks after the final pit stop no power steering problem or hydraulic failure which was speculated during the race, but he seemed to be driving around that issue. It didn't make a great restart after the safety car. He says that's because he just couldn't get the car straight. Literally couldn't get the car straightened out to get the power down and follow leclerc for that restart. That safety car was caused by AlphaTauri's Pierre gasly around lap 44, the car seemed to shut down and then set fire to itself quite spectacularly we'll find out what that was all about on the podcast today. Max Verstappen's teammates, Sergio Pérez, with just a lap to go whilst fending off Lewis Hamilton, Perez at the time in third position also suffering what was listed as a power unit failure, the same reason that Max Verstappen would be in lap 54, retiring from the Grand Prix with a power unit failure, but we think, again, we don't know yet until that investigation is complete at the time of recording this podcast, something to do with the fuel pickup system in both cars that of course is a common FIA mandated part, not made by Red Bull. So we'll wait and see the reaction to that. If we go back to the beginning of testing, we mentioned Ferrari we're looking okay. But these things tend to come back and bite us on the bum, and our listeners and our readers will tell us about it. If we do get these things wrong, but for a while we've been saying they're looking all right, joined on the podcast today by auto sport dot com editor Hayden Cobb, F one reporter Matt Q and our F one reporter in Bahrain, Luke Smith. Luke, I'll go back to Barcelona testing where there was a train line running behind the circuits. And you mentioned, maybe just a few people want to buy a ticket, just in case they want to get on the Ferrari hype train. It's left to station and it is barreling down the line. I mean, that Ferrari hype train is going to be packed, right from now on. That was an amazing start to the season. It really was, yeah, I think after all of the expectations that have been built up at three pre season and the moment that Ferrari unveiled that radical looking F one 75 car, we kind of thought, oh, this looks pretty good. And there's the old sort of cliche and motor sport that if it looks fast, it will be fast, and that obviously is not always true. But yeah, it was just such a dominant display by Ferrari. I think them and Red Bull were very, very evenly matched Red Bull had a bit of a pace advantage over all, I think, but it was leclerc looks in real control. It was a really good battle between him and Verstappen. It was very, very clean, which was good. And basically the moment of Verstappen overcooks it at the third attempt to try and get past the clerk from then on leclerc team just have everything under control. It's very serene and I commented on this, I think I was talking to Alex Carlin or grand priti out at the track the other day and I said that everything from Ferrari this year, it just seemed very calm, very serene, everything's just going really well executed. And I think the race today was a perfect example of that. It was a very, very good performance all round. Leclerc, we've seen what he can do. I mean, he won two races, brilliantly in 2019. He's been on form even in Ferrari's two low years. But Ferrari are back. It's just so good to see F one's most famous team back on the top step of the podium that Italian anthem playing. I was in the media pad while the podium was going along and there was some colleagues next to me humming along to the alley and anthem since it's a very catchy tune and it's just, yeah, it's just a good, it was a really, I think just a good, it's a good news story for F one. They've always said that a strong Ferrari means a strong F one and that's very, very true and I think that the nature of the way and it's a good way to start the year Ferrari obviously a very, very happy, but the fact that it looks so close between the leading teams as well. It's really, really exciting. So yeah, a very positive result. I think all around. If you're going to bust out a cliche this early in the podcast, so will I, maybe not a cliche, maybe a Ron Dennis ism, some Ron speak to finish first, first you have to finish. That actually makes sense because that's not the worst of what he said. That one's actually true, and it was about reliability that caused our finishing order again to flatter some of the other drivers and teams today. Matt Q, you are going to be on a job share with Alex kalinka. So you're in the UK tonight, but you'll be traveling for the races that he's not going to. So yes, Ferrari did amazingly well to get a one two, but we can't talk about that without also mentioning why Red Bull weren't on the podium today. So yes, they did well, but what did you make of those? Well, those last few laps when they got hit by those reliability problems. I think I'll follow your lead Martin, pluck out another sort of famous person from motor sport. Is that whole Colin Chapman thing of you design your cars for a 57 lap race, you design your cars to be able to do 57 and a half laps and then it doesn't matter what happened to them. Unfortunately, Red Bull got it. One luck too short with their car or Perez's car expiring just before and Verstappen's as well. So I think it's now come to light, isn't it? Both of them have been isolated to suspicious, I think, is quite Christian Horner used in the press release, but suspiciously similar fuel fuel feed or fuel pump failures. So looking into that. But I go along with what Luke said, I think it was a great result, it was good to see Ferrari up there, but I think on another day that that could have been Red Bull's very easily. I think we sort of check expectations a little bit. But I think max probably didn't quite nail his qualifying lap and then today race plays for Red Bull was good, but not inspiring, but I think that I think you can probably flip a coin on whichever day and those two teams can swap around..