“Start From Bahrain and Finish P1”: F1 Twitter Jokes Max Verstappen Retired Only To Make F1 ‘Interesting’

Sabyasachi Biswas
|Published 18/03/2023

The 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix qualification has been an absolute nightmare for Max Verstappen. The championship protagonist faced the first blow of the season when his car came to a sudden halt during Q2.

This sent him to the middle of the pack for race day. Despite a poor finish to the qualification, fans backed the Red Bull driver to seal the win and joked that he had done it only to make the race more interesting.

As per reports, a driveshaft issue forced the Dutchman to retire during the second qualification. After taking P1 in Q1, the Red Bull ace was in full swing to repeat his excellence in Q2. However, the unfortunate issue switched off the power of his RB-19 and the speed dipped drastically.

Verstappen returned to the pits to try rejoining the session, but it was too little too late. As he was seen moving out of the seat and going out of the Red Bull garage with his performance coach Bradley Scanes, it was all over for him. This was, interestingly, the first-ever retirement for a Red Bull this season so far.

However, the fans believe the 25-year-old can pull off a win despite starting from the mid of the pack. The defending champion is to start Sunday’s race from P15. He will start ahead of Yuki Tsunoda of AlphaTauri and behind Valtteri Bottas of Alfa Romeo.

Can the Red Bull star imitate the 2022 Belgian GP masterclass?

In the 2022 F1 season, the Dutch pilot faced a similar situation. Even though he had no reliability issues back then, he started from P14 after taking a grid penalty. Despite starting from that low, the 25-year-old managed to pick up a win.

Regarded as one of the best races from the defending champion, the Belgian GP was indeed a race to remember for him and his fans. As it stands, fans are waiting to see a repeat of that race in Saudi Arabia tomorrow unless he faced another mechanical issue like Bahrain or Australia last year.

Fans believe Verstappen can pull it off

Despite having a position disadvantage, the F1 community believes it will be an easy task for the driver. Given the lace advantage RB-19 has, it’ll be a walk in the park for the two-time world champion, they believe.

The Dutchman was dominant in Jeddah throughout the week so far. From Free Practice to Qualification, he had the fastest time on the sheet. It’s unfortunate on his part that he couldn’t be on the pole or was on the front row, but a podium or even a win is very much on the cards.

Given below are some of the reactions taken on this from Twitter:

Interestingly, fans were aware that Leclerc was hit with a 10-place grid penalty. This will see him start from a position near the Dutchman. The community didn’t leave the chance to have a go at them regarding their “friendship.”

Max Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez to start from the pole. Last week’s surprise was Fernando Alonso to start from P2 and Mercedes’ George Russell to start from P3.

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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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