Newey defends Red Bull's Monaco pit strategy

Red Bull technical boss Adrian Newey has defended the team's strategy calls in Monaco, and insists that it wasn't clear whether pitting first or second would be the most successful option for the its drivers.

Newey defends Red Bull's Monaco pit strategy
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13
Adrian Newey, Red Bull Racing
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13
Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB13
 Third place Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing, sprays Champagne from the podium
Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing

Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo were running in fourth and fifth behind Valtteri Bottas in the early stages of the race.

The team called in the Dutchman first – forcing Mercedes to react with Bottas – and subsequently Ricciardo stayed out for five extra laps, during which he put in some impressively fast times.

When he finally pitted he had jumped both his team mate and Bottas to claim third.

Verstappen made his frustration clear over the radio, and a similar situation unfolded at Ferrari, where Sebastian Vettel got ahead of Kimi Raikkonen, inevitably leading to claims that the Italian team had favoured its main title candidate.

However, Newey insists that it was not as clear cut as that, and that both Red Bull drivers knew before the race what the likely strategy was.

The team had not run the supersoft all weekend, saving a single set for the race, which added to the uncertainty.

"We discussed it before that if we were struck behind Bottas with our two cars, then we would split them," he told Motorsport.com.

"It wasn't clear before the race which was more powerful, the undercut or the overcut. The undercut got the warm-up on the first lap, the overcut depends on you having more natural pace.

"It was close. The undercut almost worked. Unfortunately we had a slightly slow pit stop [with Verstappen]. It was one of those judgement ones.

"Obviously if you're going to do one undercutting and one overcutting, whoever's ahead has the best chance of an undercut, so that's what we did."

Regarding Verstappen's frustration, he said: "We discussed it before the race, we said to both drivers in all honesty we don't know which is the better solution, the undercut or the overcut, and they both accepted it.

"It's the usual thing, when a driver gets out of the car he doesn't understand, his adrenalin is still up."

Newey said Red Bull's form in Monaco was encouraging as the latest updates paid off, although he concedes that the next two races in Montreal and Baku are likely to be more challenging, as power unit performance will be at a premium.

"Suffice to say we are likely to be less competitive in the next couple of events," he said. "They have similar characteristics, although not as extreme as Monza.

"At the moment we've been reasonably clear as third-best team. Obviously we've now got to try and move forwards to do more of what we did in Monaco.

"I think the car showed reasonably pace, and we've just got to keep working at it. Monaco is obviously a fairly unique circuit, but we've definitely improved the car. We had a few bits on it this weekend, to compliment what we did in Barcelona. So we've just got to keep pushing forwards."

shares
comments
Giovinazzi secures seven FP1 outings with Haas

Previous article

Giovinazzi secures seven FP1 outings with Haas

Next article

Mercedes needs Vettel DNF to keep F1 title hopes alive - Lauda

Mercedes needs Vettel DNF to keep F1 title hopes alive - Lauda
Load comments
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Prime

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment.

Why a misunderstood Kimi Raikkonen will thrive in retirement Prime

Why a misunderstood Kimi Raikkonen will thrive in retirement

Three years on from Kimi Raikkonen's last Grand Prix victory at Austin, he is now six races away from ending the longest Formula 1 career in history. His friend and former Ice1 Racing rally team PR man Anthony Peacock explains why there’s nobody quite like the 2007 world champion and why F1 will miss him (but he won’t miss it).

How Verstappen has become F1 champion material Prime

How Verstappen has become F1 champion material

As Red Bull and Honda go all-out for victory in the Japanese engine manufacturer’s last season of its latest Formula 1 dalliance, Max Verstappen finds himself thrust into a compelling title fight with Lewis Hamilton. He told OLEG KARPOV about his evolution into a world championship contender and why Red Bull's no compromise ethos suits him down to the ground

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
Why long-run times should please Red Bull in Austin F1 battle Prime

Why long-run times should please Red Bull in Austin F1 battle

Mercedes has been on a roll of late in the ultra-tight fight to win the 2021 Formula 1 world championship. It started off well in practice at Austin for this weekend’s US Grand Prix, but Red Bull got closer as Friday unfolded and even seemed to find an edge in one critical area of what seems set to be set to be another close contest.

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
The six critical factors that could hand F1 2021 glory to Hamilton or Verstappen Prime

The six critical factors that could hand F1 2021 glory to Hamilton or Verstappen

The 2021 Formula 1 title battle is finely poised with six races remaining, as just six points separate championship leader Max Verstappen from seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton. In such a closely-fought season, the outcome could hinge on several small factors playing the way of Red Bull or Mercedes

Formula 1
Oct 22, 2021
Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed? Prime

Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed?

Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll is determined to make the group a billion-dollar business. MARK GALLAGHER analyses his latest play – bringing former McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh into the fold

Formula 1
Oct 22, 2021
Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner Prime

Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner

Stepping up to F1 in 1962, Jo Siffert shone with Rob Walker Racing Team and BRM before his career was abruptly ended in a fatal crash at Brands Hatch in 1971. Kevin Turner looks back at the life of Switzerland's first F1 winner on the 50th anniversary of his death

Formula 1
Oct 21, 2021
What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat Prime

What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat

OPINION: Max Verstappen is back in the lead of the 2021 Formula 1 drivers’ championship, with the season’s final flyaway events set to get underway in the USA this weekend. But a defensive stance he’s recently adopted could have a lasting impact for the Red Bull driver when it comes to his chances of defeating Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes

Formula 1
Oct 21, 2021