Reigning World Champion Max Verstappen had a passenger join him for half of Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix, where he claimed his 41st victory in Formula 1.
His win saw him draw level with three-time World Champion Ayrton Senna, whilst it also marked his sixth already in 2023.
As well as that, Verstappen’s win was Red Bull’s 100th since joining the pinnacle of motorsport in 2005, with it having also been the 200th win for a car designed by chief technical officer Adrian Newey.
It was another comfortable victory for the 25-year-old, who’s only dramatic moment during the race was when he hit a bird.
Unfortunately, the animal did die in the incident, with it having remained on his right brake duct until it was removed by a mechanic after the race.
Verstappen felt “sorry” for the mechanic who was left to recover the dead bird, whilst he also admitted that it “didn’t look great”.
“It was still stuck on my car when I came in, it didn’t look great!” Verstappen told Sky Sports F1.
“I also feel sorry for the mechanic having to remove it.”
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner also noted Verstappen striking the bird as the “biggest moment” of his afternoon, highlighting how easily he claimed yet another victory to extend his championship lead to 69 points.
“I think the biggest moment he had was hitting that bird, which just did half the race behind the front right brake duct,” said Horner.
Apart from hitting the bird, the only thing Verstappen had to manage during the race was his car’s temperature, something which is a common theme at the Circuit de Gilles-Villeneuve.
Horner was pleased to see how well his star driver dealt with controlling his RB19’s temperature, with his “healthy gap” to Fernando Alonso behind having been very beneficial.
“They just struggled to get temperature into the car, and it is hard generating the energy when there’s only sort of six corners here and long straights,” added Horner.
“You could see that the lap times were quite variable for all the drivers at certain points in time
“But Max was able to break the DRS and then pull out a healthy gap before the safety car. Then, after the safety car, he got 10 seconds as well.
“This type of circuit is quite unique, so to have come through this challenge as well is really encouraging.”