Christian Horner revealed he was “screaming” at Max Verstappen’s race engineer, Gianpiero Lambiase, to pull him in for an early pit stop at Zandvoort.
There was a debate between Verstappen and Lambiase when the rain was falling as to whether the Red Bull driver should pit or not, with Verstappen believing it was better to stay out at that time.
But with team-mate Sergio Perez clawing in time hand over fist on intermediate tyres, the Red Bull pit wall overruled the World Championship leader and ensured he stopped on the second lap.
Christian Horner screamed ‘GP, get him in!’ at Zandvoort
Verstappen had wanted to stay out on slick tyres in worsening conditions in the early stages at Zandvoort, but it wasn’t long before Lambiase came onto team radio to instruct his driver to pit – with softs clearly the less preferable tyre to be on at that point.
This was presumably prompted by intervention from Horner, whose instructions to Verstappen’s engineer and confidante were quite clear, to say the least.
“Yeah, I’m screaming at his engineer at this point saying ‘GP, get him in!’” Horner told Channel 4 after the race when asked about the team radio discussion.
“Of course, Checo, he went off at the first turn in those conditions, so that was why we pitted him and then the red flag came.
“He unfortunately clipped the pit entry, he was probably surfing at that point on the water and just triggered a breach of the [pit lane] speeding so [a] great, great shame for him not to be on the podium.”
Verstappen eventually went on to take a ninth consecutive victory, matching the all-time record total of Red Bull alumnus Sebastian Vettel from 2013.
Horner was at the helm of the team when Vettel made that record his own, and he can scarcely believe that Verstappen has been able to match such a historic feat.
“It’s unbelievable to think, doing it once with Sebastian was insane, to have matched it with Max, particularly after everything that’s been thrown at us today,” Horner added.
“I mean, he was just incredible today and I think that the whole team, the conditions, everything that we had to navigate, not just today but throughout the weekend – eight pit stops the guys did in the pit lane today and a car repair for Checo along the way as well. So yeah, great performance.”
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