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Horner Praises Sainz's Remarkable Post-Surgery Win

Horner Praises Sainz’s Remarkable Post-Surgery Win

25/03/2024

Christian Horner voices his frustration over Max Verstappen’s Melbourne retirement, Red Bull’s first mechanical failure in races since 2022.

Christian Horner acknowledges Max Verstappen’s retirement as frustrating for Red Bull, marking the team’s first race retirement due to a mechanical failure in two years. The Austrian team’s director reflects on the mechanical issue with car number 1.

“It’s our first retirement since 2022, which, coincidentally, also happened here in Melbourne,” Horner stated. “This wasn’t the race we aimed for. Firstly, with Max’s car, it was obviously very disappointing to encounter this brake problem.”

“I believe that right from the start of the Grand Prix, the brakes were slightly binding, but not severely, which obviously created an issue as it was akin to having the handbrake slightly engaged throughout the race. It wasn’t tight enough to prevent moving forward, but enough for the friction to cause overheating within two laps.”

Horner Praises Sainz's Remarkable Post-Surgery Win

“Then with Checo, we experienced some issues with the floor, losing a significant amount of downforce on the car, leading us to switch to a very poor balance for managing the tires, which is highly unusual for us.”

After examining Perez’s car, Horner reported a trivial issue that led to the performance drop.

“While overtaking Fernando, he picked up a tear-off under the floor, which lodged in an area causing a significant loss of downforce. The car no longer operated as it should. Then you start to see tire degradation, again by the end of the second stint, which is unusual for our cars.”

“I think it was more than 20 downforce points lost. So, it’s a significant amount. It demonstrates how sensitive these F1 cars are.”

Horner aims to understand this defeat but commends Carlos Sainz for his victory: “So yes, it’s truly frustrating to experience our first retirement in two years, there’s a lot to learn from this race, and it’s disappointing to leave Australia with a bit less than usual.”

“Once again, I have immense respect for Carlos, who is coming back from surgery and managed a weekend like this. It’s remarkable. It was a strong performance by him and Ferrari; they seized their opportunity and achieved the result they deserved.”

Horner Praises Sainz’s Remarkable Post-Surgery Win. Horner Praises Sainz’s Remarkable Post-Surgery Win

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