Verstappen says underpowered engine behind overtaking prowess

Max Verstappen has credited his emergence as one of Formula 1's overtaking specialists in part to having a down-on power engine this year.

The Dutchman earned high praise in 2015 for some spectacular moves past his rivals – including around the outside of Felipe Nasr at Spa's Blanchimont and on Sergio Perez at Interlagos.

Reflecting on the season, the Toro Rosso driver reckons that part of the reason for him needing to pull off such sensational efforts was because he did not the engine power from Renault to get past his rivals on the straights.

“Definitely it made my overtakes more interesting,” Verstappen told “If we had a very good engine, then we would have just got past on the straight.

“We would have had similar results [in the end], but it doesn't make it that interesting!

“So on the one hand it meant I had to pull off such good moves, because I didn't have the engine to pass the guys on the straights like the other guys.

"But on the other hand, you want a good engine to operate a bit higher up, that is for sure.”

Spa was best

Although Verstappen made several notable passes over the season, he thinks that the move around Nasr was his highlight.

“I think the best one was definitely Spa,” he said. “You go over 300km/h, and it was very difficult to know what you have to do there – and to find the space.

“I think also China was good, I also enjoyed Malaysia and also Brazil – that was one I really enjoyed.”

More power welcome

Although Verstappen seemingly revelled in the way that his power deficit forced him to be spectacular this year, he is delighted about Toro Rosso's move to Ferrari in 2016.

“I think if we have an engine next year with a bit more horsepower we can make a jump forwards for sure,” he said.

“Also in terms of the car it looks very promising - although you don't know what the other teams come up with. But definitely if we have more power it will be better for us.”

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Max Verstappen
Teams Toro Rosso
Article type Breaking news