On-board radios Friday GP São Paulo | Verstappen surprises with fast lap: ‘It was unexpected!’

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On-board radios Friday GP São Paulo |  Verstappen surprises with fast lap: 'It was unexpected!'

Max Verstappen managed to take pole position again in São Paulo, but this time too it was not without a struggle. The Dutchman was too fast for the competition and therefore did not have to count on opposition, but external factors soon appeared to play a significant role. Logically, the unpredictability in Brazil caused a lot of frustration with the on-board radios, and F1Maximaal lists the best messages.

During the first and only free practice in São Paulo, everything seemed to look good. The session started quietly and without too many problems, until the drivers from all sides complained about the dirt on the track. The monkey soon got out of hand when Esteban Ocon started talking about damage to his front tire: ‘There’s a screw in my front tire! Not upside down, but really from the side.’ Not much later, the curtain also fell for Fernando Alonso. “We have a flat tire, you need to come back inside!”

Some drivers, to their great relief, were not bothered by the screws on the track, but did encounter other problems. For example, there was something wrong with Max Verstappen’s seat: ‘My seat seems to be moving. It looks like it wasn’t installed properly, but we’ll see after this round.’ Engineer Gianpiero Lambiase confirmed the Dutchman’s expectations and quickly came up with the redeeming word: ‘Max, we see. It’s not a problem with reliability so you can just keep driving.’

Things weren’t always easy for Logan Sargeant either, and things only got harder for the rookie when he couldn’t even keep his four wheels on the ground. ‘Mate, what happened there? I just completely took off!’ The American driver initially made a mistake, but not much later the following message came. ‘There seems to be something wrong in the front left, I’m driving on two wheels!’ Verstappen was also plagued by problems during the session, because just before the end the wind suddenly appeared. ‘Pay attention Max, it’s very windy. It really varies from round to round,” Lambiase emphasized. “Yes, I know,” the Dutchman indicated. “It’s hard to stay consistent.”

Rain showers caused chaos in São Paulo

The weather gods seemed to be kind to the Formula 1 circus in recent race weekends, but in São Paulo they came to watch again. As the day progressed, the rain radar was closely monitored, and rightly so: With about seven minutes to go, it suddenly started pouring down during Q3, and even before the dark clouds braved the circuit, they caused quite a commotion. “No rain is expected for at least the next two to three minutes,” said Carlos Sainz’s on-board radio during Q1. Yet less than ten minutes later, Lance Stroll came with another message: “Raindrops are already falling.”

During Q2 the tension increased even more when the oncoming rain showers also appeared to have an influence on other factors. “The temperature of the track seems to be dropping rapidly,” Lewis Hamilton heard over his on-board radio, for example. The final blow really came during Q3, and the gusts of wind soon played a role. ‘It looks like night!’ Alonso shouted over the on-board radio. Charles Leclerc, in turn, understood little about it, because he had not heard anything about rain himself. ‘It felt like it was raining but I didn’t see any rain anywhere! This is really, really weird.”

Pole position for Verstappen not without a fight

The bad luck did not seem to end for Verstappen either, although the Dutchman managed to secure pole position amid all the chaos. It already started during Q1: ‘My car really jumps around, it looks like a kangaroo! It’s the same problem as in Mexico.’ Shortly after he set his last fast lap, Verstappen’s frustration exploded. ‘I really had no control over this band at all, gosh!’ Yet Lambiase came up with the redeeming word, and the Dutchman did not see that coming at all. “You’re number one at the moment.” The three-time world champion almost stuttered over the radio when he responded to the message: “That was… very unexpected.”

Verstappen can take his sixteenth win of the season this weekend in Brazil. Also betting on F1? Register now at JACKS and receive 60 euros in free bets! If you play responsibly, you keep it fun. What does gambling cost you? Stop on time, 18+

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