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Despite Finishing 13 Secs Ahead in Sprint Race, Max Verstappen Isn’t Delighted With RB20’s Performance

Sabyasachi Biswas

Despite Finishing 13 Secs Ahead in Sprint Race, Max Verstappen Isn’t Delighted With RB20’s Performance

Max Verstappen started the Chinese GP Sprint from P4 on the grid but won it dominantly, finishing 13 seconds ahead of second-placed Lewis Hamilton. In just 19 laps, Verstappen built up this huge gap, sending an ominous message to Red Bull’s rivals for the Grand Prix. However, Verstappen was not particularly satisfied with how the RB20 felt on Saturday.

After the Sprint race, Verstappen admitted that he didn’t feel at his best with the car. “I don’t base my feelings on an advantage,” said Verstappen in a report published by the Dutch Telegraph. “I want to feel it myself.”

Just a few hours later, however, Verstappen put up a brilliant performance at the Grand Prix qualifying. He secured his fifth pole position in as many races this campaign, suggesting that he was more comfortable with the car.

Red Bull could have adjusted the RB20 before Verstappen suited up for qualifying. Under new rules, teams are allowed to make changes to their cars once the Sprint race concludes, which is probably why Verstappen was able to put up a show.

Verstappen finished over three-tenths of a second ahead of second-placed Sergio Perez, who followed him in P2. The Dutchman and Perez also seem to be the favorites to finish 1-2 at the Shanghai International Circuit on Sunday.

Verstappen’s pole position on Saturday was Red Bull’s 100th in F1, and the team will be hoping that the 26-year-old brings home their fourth win of the season on Sunday.

Max Verstappen’s Chinese GP so far

Verstappen at his best, is always up to speed from the very get-go of a Grand Prix weekend. But when the Chinese GP weekend kicked off, he kept complaining about the set-up. The Red Bull ace found it difficult to get up to speed in Sprint qualifying, especially with rain affecting proceedings.

He finished P4, which made things slightly more difficult for him when the lights went out ahead of the Sprint. Still, Verstappen made his charge to victory look fairly easy.

Pole position in Grand Prix qualifying, on the other hand, never looked to be in doubt. Even with difficulties he faced with the RB20, Verstappen was able to win the Sprint with a 13-second gap, so with a car he is comfortable with, he could easily dominate the rest of the grid.

Post Edited By:Somin Bhattacharjee

About the author

Sabyasachi Biswas

Sabyasachi Biswas


Sabyasachi Biswas is an F1 journalist at The SportsRush. With over one and a half decades of love for the sport and five years of experience in the field, he dreams to be a regular at the paddock when the lights go out. A Red Bull fan and F1 fan in general over the years, he enjoyed watching Felipe Massa, Sebastian Vettel, and Max Verstappen dominate the track. Apart from F1, he's also a big-time Madridista and Federer fanatic. He was a sub-junior level footballer, won inter-district quizzes and debate competitions back in school. A travel freak throughout, he tries different cuisines and learns new cultures whenever he's away from the keyboard.

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