Verstappen says bad start was because of team error

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Verstappen says bad start was because of team error
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Sep 6, 2016, 10:25 AM

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen says his slow getaway from the grid of the Italian Grand Prix was because his RB12 was set up "too aggressively".

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB12
Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 VJM09, Felipe Massa, Williams FW38, and Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 VJM09 at the start of the race
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31 and Pascal Wehrlein, Manor Racing MRT05 at the start of the race
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38 Mercedes, leads Fernando Alonso, McLaren MP4-31 Honda; Nico Hulkenberg, Force India VJM09 Mercedes; Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB12 TAG Heuer and the remainder of the field at the start of the race
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB12
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB12

Verstappen was seventh on the grid, but the anti-stall system kicking in at the start meant he dropped back to 12th.

He managed to reclaim some of the lost places in the opening laps and eventually returned to seventh by the time chequered flag flew.

“I carried out the normal start procedure, but the RPM went down too far because the team had set the car a bit too aggressively”, Verstappen told Dutch TV program Peptalk on Monday evening.

“Instead of stalling like a normal road car would do, we have a program in the engine that makes sure the neutral comes in very quickly. But if you need to pull the clutch in again and go back to first gear, you lose a lot of time.”

The Dutchman claims there was nothing he could have done to prevent his poor start.

Verstappen said: “This time it was the team. These things can happen. Every setting is as close to the limit as possible to have the best possible start, and this time it went wrong.

"But over the whole course of the season we have always had good starts. So this can happen.

“You win and you lose together. These kind of things happen. Of course, afterwards you go and analyse what can be improved, and the start can be improved.

"After the race the team explained to me in great detail what went wrong.”

“Everybody does his best and everybody is allowed to make a mistake," he shrugged. “Because if you are a team boss and punish every time a mistake has been made, then everybody will be too afraid to go to the limit.”

Additional reporting by Tim Biesbrouck

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