Red Bull Provides Reassurance to Verstappen Fans Following Power Unit Issues

Red Bull Advisor Offers Insights on Verstappen’s Engine Woes

Montreal witnessed another challenging start for Max Verstappen in the Formula 1 weekend, as adverse weather and power unit issues troubled the Dutch driver.

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Red Bull advisor Dr. Helmut Marko has provided some reassurance amidst the setbacks faced by the triple-world champion, despite the limited track time during practice sessions.

During FP2, Verstappen encountered engine troubles, leading him to pull his RB20 into the pits with visible smoke. Following the session, Marko clarified that the issue stemmed from a technical fault within the engine, specifically on the electrical side.

“It is a problem with the engine,” remarked the 81-year-old to “We need to take the engine out of the car to find the exact cause, but at least it’s on the electrical side of the engine.”

Max Verstappen suffers early setback at Canadian GP as Red Bull car fault  restricts practice running | F1 News | Sky Sports

However, Marko swiftly addressed concerns that the problem arose from a new power unit component in Verstappen’s car. Despite running new power unit parts at the power-sensitive Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, it was confirmed that the affected component, believed to be the ERS (energy recovery system), was not replaced. Marko emphasized, “No, this is not the new engine, but an older variant.”

Looking ahead to the weekend’s remaining sessions, with mixed weather conditions anticipated, Verstappen’s setbacks in FP2 have put him at a disadvantage. Red Bull has experienced challenging Fridays recently, with struggles in Imola followed by a tough outing in Monaco.

F1 leader Max Verstappen hit by smoky battery problem in Canadian Grand  Prix practice - The San Diego Union-Tribune

With FP3 and qualifying forecasted to have challenging conditions, Marko expressed hope for a dry final practice session to provide valuable track time for the team’s lead driver. 

“It is indeed annoying that the first session was also largely wet and so we cannot draw any conclusions,” he noted. “In order to find a good set-up, let’s hope that the final practice goes dry. If we get at least one dry practice, then it need not be so painful.”