Red Bull brands US GP triumph as Max Verstappen’s most difficult victory in 2023

Red Bull wins their 17th race of the season at the COTA GP.

Red Bull brands US GP triumph as Max Verstappen’s most difficult victory in 2023

Helmut Marko & Max Verstappen (Via IMAGO)

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen emerged victorious in the recent COTA GP as well. Thus, increasing the total race wins this season to 15 races. In addition to this, the victory at the COTA GP was Verstappen’s 50th career race win. Despite winning the race, Verstappen faced a lot of issues with his machinery on the track.

Max Verstappen was very vocal about the problems he faced with the machinery at the COTA GP. He termed braking the main problem. The brake pads were deteriorating rapidly during the race, and this didn’t give him the right feeling. The braking was unpredictable, and he was braking with the front predominantly and sometimes with the rear predominantly.

Helmut Marko, the Red Bull advisor, commented on Max Verstappen’s performance despite facing vehicle issues. Marko also explained the braking issues within the car that caused inconsistencies for Verstappen during the race, saying:

There were some indications in the qualification, but before the race, we replaced the brakes. 

Further, Helmut Marko said:

We couldn't see the reason in the data, but of course, the issues were obvious during the race. He informed race engineer Gianpiero Lambiasis not to speak to him in the braking zones. Maybe it's because he had to do a lot of marketing things here in America, and that was a bit too much for him.

Although the team mentioned the difficulties, Verstappen worked around these problems masterfully en-route to yet another triumph.

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The COTA GP also revealed how the Red Bulls are losing pace to the runner-up cars

Max Verstappen was in a cutthroat competition with the runner-up, Lewis Hamilton. Verstappen was constantly pressurized by the Briton, and he found it difficult to cling to his position. Verstappen finished the race with a mere two-second gap over the Briton. This revealed how the lack of upgrades in the RB19 might be causing the racers to lose pace in the race.

Oracle Red Bull Racing during US GP
Oracle Red Bull Racing during US GP (via GP Blog)

A few slow pit stops from the Mercedes pit crew helped Verstappen hold his position. However, it is pointless to speculate on the possibility of what would happen if Hamilton had faster pit times as the racer was later disqualified from the race due to technical infringements. The braking issues within the car were also very critically harming Verstappen’s pace.

Red Bull has declared that the team is not going to bring any upgrades to the current RB19 and will put their focus on next year’s RB20. This might make Red Bull lose even more pace in the remaining four races of the season. Despite the hardships during the race, Verstappen has won the COTA GP.

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