Red Bull ban Max Verstappen

Max Verstappen has expressed disappointment at Red Bull's decision.

Red Bull Racing’s star driver, Max Verstappen, has been in imperious form this year and is well on his way to claiming his third consecutive Formula 1 crown.

His team-mate, Sergio Perez, gave him a run for his money in the opening races of the season, but Verstappen has benefitted from the Mexican’s shortcomings in recent races to open up a very comfortable lead at the top of the standings.

And with his grip on the championship being so strong, it seems other things are on his mind.

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The Dutchman has revealed that he was prevented from participating in a special event featuring retired Red Bull legends Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel racing their iconic RB7 and RB8 cars at the legendary Nordschleife circuit.

Despite his eagerness to seize the opportunity, Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko intervened, citing concerns about Verstappen pushing the limits and the potential risks involved. 

Verstappen expressed his disappointment at being unable to take part in the event, acknowledging the hazards associated with the renowned circuit.

“I wanted to do it, but I was not allowed by Helmut,” the Dutchman revealed ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix. 

“He knew that I would try and go to the limits. I would have loved to do it.”

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Verstappen recognised the rationale behind Marko’s decision, acknowledging that if he had been allowed to participate, he would have been enticed to break the lap record at the Nordschleife.

“It’s also risky to drive here,” Verstappen admitted, acknowledging the inherent dangers of the circuit.

“It just depends on how you hit a barrier. But that’s normally not the plan, of course. But hopefully one day I can do it.”

While Verstappen understood the safety concerns surrounding the event, he still harbours hopes of experiencing the Nordschleife in the future, potentially in a GT3 car if not an F1 car.

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“It would have been amazing in an F1 car,” Verstappen stated wistfully. “But if it’s not allowed in an F1 car, then maybe one day in a GT3 car.”

The Nordschleife, known as the “Green Hell,” is renowned for its demanding and treacherous track layout, posing a significant challenge even to seasoned drivers. 

Given Verstappen’s competitive nature and his desire to push boundaries, Marko’s decision to prioritise safety and avoid unnecessary risks is understandable.