Article 34.10 derails Red Bull plans

Max Verstappen became a three-time Formula 1 world champion on Saturday at the 2023 Qatar Grand Prix.

Red Bull were forced to alter their celebration plans Saturday evening at the Qatar Grand Prix, after Max Verstappen become a three-time World Champion in what was an eventful sprint race.

Starting from third, it was widely expected that the Dutchman would reclaim his title once again, something which was actually confirmed before the 19-lap race had finished.

For Verstappen not to be crowned World Champion before Sunday, Sergio Perez essentially needed to win the sprint and hope that the Dutchman wouldn’t finish any higher than seventh.

Instead, Perez crashed out of the race, through no fault of his own.

Want to work in Formula 1? Browse the latest F1 job vacancies

The Mexican was caught up in an accident with Esteban Ocon and Nico Hulkenberg into Turn 2, where the trio were side-by-side.

Ocon arguably caused the crash by veering across Hulkenberg and Perez, sending all three out of the race.

As a result, this sealed Verstappen the title.

Even though he didn’t even need to finish the sprint, he brought his RB19 home in second place.

Article continues below

The celebrations weren’t quite as emphatic as usually seen by the Milton Keynes-based outfit, who typically spray a lot of Red Bull.

It was discovered by veteran Sky Sports reporter Ted Kravitz that the Austrians couldn’t celebrate in their usual way, due to Article 34.10.

As there is still racing to take place on Sunday, Red Bull can’t make their pit box “even stickier” as this would go against the rule, something which was confirmed to Kravitz by a Red Bull employee after he initially pondered it himself.

“I’m just wondering what they’re going to do,” said Kravitz on Ted’s Notebook.

“They normally do a photo and then they normally spray Red Bull everywhere. And if they spray Red Bull everywhere… there’s a Grand Prix on this track surface tomorrow here.

READ: Max Verstappen wins his ‘first legal championship’

“I’m just checking with my pit lane colleague Albert Fabrega but they can’t spray the Red Bull because that would be making their pit box even stickier and [it will help] the pit stops.

“I don’t think they can do the Red Bull moment! They can’t, can they? If they do that sticky Red Bull moment, because the FIA will do them. I’m absolutely sure of that.”

Kravitz was right, as Article 34.10 states: “Other than by drying or sweeping, or by laying tyre rubber when cars leave their pit stop position, competitors may not attempt to enhance the grip of the surface in the pitlane unless a problem has been clearly identified and a solution agreed to by the safety delegate.”

It means that the celebrations will have to wait until Sunday, as all the employees will need to ensure they sleep well to be as prepared as possible for Verstappen to try and win from pole position.