Verstappen explains "quite normal" Gasly Q3 block

Max Verstappen says being surprised by late overtakes by his Formula 1 rivals prompted him to block Red Bull teammate Pierre Gasly at the end of Chinese Grand Prix qualifying.

Verstappen explains "quite normal" Gasly Q3 block

Verstappen was overtaken by Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari and both Renault drivers between the last two corners of the Shanghai circuit as a queue of cars prepared for their final flying laps in the top-10 shoot-out. 

This prevented him from starting a lap in time before the session ended and prompted him to block Gasly as his new teammate tried to overtake him into the final corner as well. 

Asked by Motorsport.com to explain what happened, Verstappen said: “We were too late anyway [to get across the line] and I already had three cars who overtook me. I was just getting my spot [in the queue]. 

“Pierre also got the hurry-up from his engineer so I think it’s quite normal.”

Asked if he did not want to let him past after being unexpectedly overtaken by the others, Verstappen said: “Looked like it, didn’t it? But we were too late anyway.”

Both Red Bulls and both Haas drivers failed to across the line in time at the end of the session. 

Asked by Motorsport.com if he was surprised by Verstappen’s move to left as Gasly looked to the inside, Gasly said: “Well, not so much, because I think at that time we were five cars in about 30 metres, so I knew there was not enough space for everybody.

“You just try to get the maximum out of it. I was just trying to find a gap, and in the end we both didn't make it. It was not ideal but it wouldn't have changed the position in qualifying, so no big deal.”

In the aftermath, an angry Verstappen had accused his fellow drivers of behaving like "wankers" and breaking the “gentleman’s agreement” not to interfere with one another’s preparations at the end of a lap.

Speaking slightly later, he admitted was not sure himself how long was left but did not want to be the “asshole” overtaking someone. 

Verstappen said he was only hurried up by his team “when they got past” and said that, plus the actions of his rivals, prompted the “mess”. 

“I thought it was 15 seconds left, or 20, I was just following the car ahead,” he said. “Then Seb went in between. So I wanted to back out of that. Then the Renaults went in front, I was like ‘where do I go now?’. 

“I could start my lap behind them but then your lap is ruined anyway. You need at least four or five seconds otherwise you get disturbed by the air.”

He added: “Next time it’s just a little more clear that I know it’s 10/15 seconds left and I know to go as well. 

“I think everybody just went a bit too late. If I’d gone, the cars behind me wouldn’t have made it. I guess everyone was just waiting too long.”

Additional reporting by Adam Cooper

shares
comments
Vettel: Gap to Mercedes "too big" in China
Previous article

Vettel: Gap to Mercedes "too big" in China

Next article

Magnussen: Vettel "did the right thing" passing Verstappen

Magnussen: Vettel "did the right thing" passing Verstappen
Load comments
The code of conduct debate prompted by the Alonso/Raikkonen marginal call Prime

The code of conduct debate prompted by the Alonso/Raikkonen marginal call

Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen's clash in Austin has thrust the debate about rights and wrongs of wheel-to-wheel combat firmly into the public spotlight, prompting complaints about the Formula 1 rules process. But what can the FIA do to prevent the issue resurfacing?

How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in F1 2021 battle Prime

How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in F1 2021 battle

Supremacy in the McLaren vs Ferrari fight over third place in the constructors’ championship has ebbed and flowed between the two teams so far in the 2021 Formula 1 season. But for several key reasons, right now it seems the advantage has swung decisively back to the Scuderia and McLaren knows it.

Formula 1
Oct 27, 2021
The details that boosted Verstappen and held back Hamilton in Austin Prime

The details that boosted Verstappen and held back Hamilton in Austin

As the 2021 Formula 1 title battle winds towards its climax, the United States GP added another thrilling act in the Lewis Hamilton-Max Verstappen battle. Although Hamilton aced the start, Verstappen and Red Bull took the initiative with strategy and were richly rewarded, despite Mercedes' best efforts as the race went down to the wire

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
US Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

US Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a baking hot afternoon in Texas, Formula 1 drivers were tested to their limits. As the pressure on the title contending squads reaches an ever-greater level of intensity, the foremost challengers again showed their class, but were outshone by a standout drive from the upper midfield

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
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.

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
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).

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
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