Max Verstappen almost didn't sleep before first Honda F1 engine run

Max Verstappen says he "almost didn't sleep" before his first experience of Honda's new Formula 1 engine, and that he has not been so excited "in a long time"

Max Verstappen almost didn't sleep before first Honda F1 engine run

Verstappen's Red Bull team will use Honda engines in F1 this season after finally splitting from long-time partner Renault.

Speaking exclusively to Autosport, Verstappen said his excitement to kick off the new Red Bull-Honda alliance started well before the two promising weeks of official pre-season testing at Barcelona that have just been completed.

"I was very excited to do the filming day at Silverstone," Verstappen said.

"I just wanted to get out and feel how the engine was behaving.

"The night before, I almost didn't sleep. I haven't been that excited in a long time."

Verstappen has been praised by Red Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko for a more mature approach to pre-season, which Marko said contributed to Red Bull's best-ever testing programme.

Addressing his happier demeanour through testing, Verstappen said: "I'm just a lot more excited.

"It's a new project with Honda and trying to understand everything is very important.

"Testing is there to get you prepared in the best possible way for the beginning of the season because you don't have a lot of time once the season starts to really adjust a lot of things."

Verstappen was critical of Renault during the dissolution of Red Bull's previous engine partnership, because he was disappointed by the French manufacturer's failure to close the gap to Mercedes and Ferrari.

That gave way to the five-time grand prix winner, and senior Red Bull figures, talking up the move to Honda and what it would mean for the team.

While expectations are being kept in check now the new season is approaching, Verstappen said the positivity remains high behind the scenes.

He said there had been no issues integrating Honda's engineers into the Red Bull team and was impressed by Honda's "incredibly focused and calm" working manner.

"It's a very fresh start and everybody is just looking forward to starting to work together and achieve great results," said Verstappen.

"There's a very positive vibe in the team, and maybe it's good just to have fresh motivation to do well.

"Everyone's very much looking forward to getting started, and not only this year, but the year after."

shares
comments
Video: How Formula 1's 2019 rules 'stung' for teams
Previous article

Video: How Formula 1's 2019 rules 'stung' for teams

Next article

Formula 1 outlines two 'strategic priorities' for 2019

Formula 1 outlines two 'strategic priorities' for 2019
The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared Plus

The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared

Recent moves within the driver market have reminded MAURICE HAMILTON of a time when contracts weren’t worth the paper they weren’t written on…

Audi’s innovative first assault on grand prix racing Plus

Audi’s innovative first assault on grand prix racing

It has been a long time coming but Audi’s arrival in Formula 1 is finally on the horizon for 2026. But it won’t be its first foray into grand prix racing, as the German manufacturer giant has a history both long and enthralling

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2022
The seven factors powering Verstappen's 2022 F1 domination Plus

The seven factors powering Verstappen's 2022 F1 domination

After a tooth and nail and, at times, toxic Formula 1 world championship scrap last year, Max Verstappen's march to a second consecutive title has been the exact opposite. But has he really changed in 2022? Here's a dive into what factors have played a crucial role, both inside the Verstappen camp and elsewhere, in the Dutch driver's domination

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2022
Why Hamilton is still the man to keep driving Mercedes forward Plus

Why Hamilton is still the man to keep driving Mercedes forward

Lewis Hamilton’s words in a recent Vanity Fair interview define both his world-view and his approach to this season: one of perpetual struggle against adversity. As GP RACING explains, that’s what Lewis feeds off – and why, far from being down and nearly out, he’s using his unique skillset to spearhead Mercedes’ revival…

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2022
The time lag of ideas that offers intrigue over F1's future fight Plus

The time lag of ideas that offers intrigue over F1's future fight

The pecking order in 2022's Formula 1 season may look pretty static as the season draws to a close, but the unique nature of the cost cap means that preparation for next season takes precedence. New developments are being pushed back to 2023 - which could mask the technical development war ongoing...

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2022
How one retro event could prove an alluring prospect for Formula 1 stars Plus

How one retro event could prove an alluring prospect for Formula 1 stars

While Formula 1 drivers taking part in retro events can prove costly, as Charles Leclerc discovered at the Monaco Historic Grand Prix, the Goodwood Revival could prove an interesting experiment for today's stars. As the event's own Tourist Trophy race proves it means serious business, a race for current F1 drivers feels as though it’s in line with where the event is currently at

Goodwood Revival
Sep 21, 2022
The surprise biggest indicator of Ferrari's 2022 F1 points downfall Plus

The surprise biggest indicator of Ferrari's 2022 F1 points downfall

Looking back to the early races of 2022 and Ferrari’s challenge to Red Bull and Max Verstappen was going better than many expected. But it has lost so much ground a surprise rival can even pip Charles Leclerc to runner-up in the standings if given the chance

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2022
How Tyrrell and Stewart forged parallel paths to F1 stardom Plus

How Tyrrell and Stewart forged parallel paths to F1 stardom

The young Ken Tyrrell was barely 
aware of motor racing – until a trip with 
his village football team to the British
 Grand Prix set him on the road to
 becoming a Formula 1 constructor. MAURICE HAMILTON details the humble beginning of Tyrrell and how Ken linked up with Jackie Stewart…

Formula 1
Sep 19, 2022