Verstappen "could feel" Honda's F1 exit was coming

Max Verstappen says Honda’s exit from Formula 1 did not take him too much by surprise, and he could "feel it coming" prior to the announcement.

Verstappen "could feel" Honda's F1 exit was coming

The Dutchman’s Red Bull team has been left hunting a new engine supplier from 2022 after current power unit partner Honda announced at the end of last week that it was to quit F1 at the end of next year.

But Verstappen said that even before Honda formally notified him and Red Bull of its plans, he sensed that they were not going to stick around.

“I mean you could feel it coming,” he said ahead of the Eifel Grand Prix. “Of course, you don't show it, but of course I also knew a little bit earlier than the announcement. But I guess it's just a shame, but understandable from their side.”

Verstappen said his suspicions about Honda’s departure came after he had committed to Red Bull until 2023, but he was aware that their future presence was never guaranteed.

“It definitely came after I signed the deal,” he said. “But they never committed a lot longer, so you could expect something like this.

“You're never sure, and that's the same for teams as well. I mean you sign a deal with them, but who knows what is happening in five years’ time, right?

“So, yeah, it is what it is. To be honest, like I said, you could feel it coming. I mean, I guess the whole situation in the whole wide world is definitely not helping.”

Read Also:

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said earlier this week that alarm bells about Honda’s future starting ringing in September when the team was notified that the Japanese car manufacturer was bringing forward its 2022 engine design by one year.

“At the end of last month we were informed that they wanted to bring forward their engine for the 2022 season to 2021,” Horner wrote in his regular Red Bull column.

“At the time, one could see that either as a good sign or a bad sign, but following our many discussions it did not come as any surprise when they clarified their intention to withdraw from Formula 1.

“Honda have been thoroughly courteous and open with Red Bull and very correct with how they have done things, which has also provided us with time.”

Verstappen said that while Honda’s decision had left Red Bull’s long term plans up in the air, he said that the short-term focus on winning would not be impacted.

“I mean it's a shame,” added Verstappen. “But, yeah, you have to understand them, the reasons, and we just keep on pushing. That's also what they said.

“Of course they're going to pull out, but they're not just going to back off now. We just keep working together, because we have a great relationship. So it's really enjoyable to work with the guys.

“For the rest of the year we just keep on going and also for next year, introducing the new engine. You know, I'm very much looking forward to that as well, to just bring it to a good end and basically push until the last race.”

shares
comments
Red Bull and Renault could work together again - Ricciardo
Previous article

Red Bull and Renault could work together again - Ricciardo

Next article

F1 drivers condemn "unacceptable" behaviour of karter Corberi

F1 drivers condemn "unacceptable" behaviour of karter Corberi
Load comments
The line Verstappen finally crossed in F1's first Jeddah race Prime

The line Verstappen finally crossed in F1's first Jeddah race

OPINION: Max Verstappen has made the 2021 Formula 1 championship. He’s taken the fight to the all-conquering Mercedes squad and its dominant champion, produced driving displays few can match. But he’s been on a controversial course too, and finally crossed a particular line in Jeddah

Why thrilling Jeddah F1 circuit needs to be safer Prime

Why thrilling Jeddah F1 circuit needs to be safer

OPINION: Saudi Arabia's new F1 circuit delivered a memorable first event, although not necessarily for all the right reasons. In the wake of the chaotic race, drivers voiced their concerns about the track but small changes could make significant improvements ahead of a return in four months.

The long-term F1 vision causing Haas’s short-term pain Prime

The long-term F1 vision causing Haas’s short-term pain

From ranking as one of the most impressive new teams to join the Formula 1 grid, Haas’s stock has plummeted along with its on-track performances over the past two seasons. Everything now hangs on whether its reforged alliance with Ferrari can deliver a better car – and whether its rookie drivers can set aside their quarrels. Oleg Karpov asks if any of these goals are achievable…

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

An ill-tempered Saudi Grand Prix made Formula 1 more soap opera than sporting spectacle at times, but there were some strong performances up and down the field on the world championship's first visit to Jeddah

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2021
How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series Prime

How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series

The inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was a race packed full of incident as Formula 1 2021's title contenders repeatedly clashed on track. Lewis Hamilton won out over Max Verstappen to level the scores heading into next weekend's Abu Dhabi finale, as Jeddah turned F1 into a drama series

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2021
The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance Prime

The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance

Dropped by Red Bull last season, Alexander Albon has fought back into a Formula 1 seat with Williams. ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains what Albon has done to earn the place soon to be vacated by the highly rated George Russell

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2021
The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes Prime

The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton...

Formula 1
Dec 4, 2021
Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Prime

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021