Plagued by Bad Engines, Verstappen Begins to ‘Question Everything’ at Red Bull F1

Car problems have led to six DNFs for the young Dutch driver in 2017.

The relationship between Red Bull F1 and engine supplier Renault is continuing to make the wrong kind of headlines this year. As the season goes on, the team suffers more and more from powerplant issues, hurting the team’s standings and creating tension in the business deal between the two entities. Red Bull chief Christian Horner expressed his frustration with Renault’s “below par” customer service, and driver Max Verstappen has made his displeasure clear on multiple occasions.

Now, it seems the 19-year old Dutchman is starting to think about both the Red Bull F1’s future and his place—or absence—in it.

Max’s father, Jos Verstappen, has been shared in his son’s concerns with the Red Bull’s situation. He was recently asked by Dutch TV channel Ziggo Sport if leaving the team for another competitor was an option, and he didn’t exactly shoot down the idea.

“Maybe this is the wrong moment to ask this question, but you do start to question everything. I notice about Max that he’s very disappointed. It’s tough to keep yourself motivated the whole time when things are going like this. I mean, he’s doing very well in qualifying, he’s half a second quicker than his team mate and he’s just behind the Ferraris.”

Following the response, the elder Verstappen brought up Max’s misfortune at Belgium on Sunday, where he was handed his sixth DNF of the season.

“And then, after seven or eight laps, he’s standing at the side of the track again. This should not be able to happen, certainly not at a top team.”

Verstappen’s car retired at this weekend’s Belgian GP., Getty

When questioned if he saw Verstappen leaving Red Bull, Horner said that he “would not be tempted” by teams like Ferrari. Additionally, he claimed that neither he nor his teammate Daniel Ricciardo would be going anywhere “for any price.”

“Max can’t do anything. Max isn’t doing anything wrong,” added Jos. “People are asking that question again if Max is being too tough on his equipment. But that’s complete nonsense.”

“I think we all need to calm down for a bit and then maybe we need to sit down with each other because this won’t last if things keep going like this.”