Marko warns: Ferrari could upend Verstappen’s victory streak

This weekend’s grand prix could signal a major competition for Max Verstappen as he aims for his third consecutive win in 2024, with the Red Bull driver acknowledging Ferrari’s formidable pace after the practice sessions. “Ferrari is certainly fast,” he observed, though he remains hopeful, adding, “But we can fine-tune a few things. I don’t see a reason to worry yet.”

Echoing Verstappen’s sentiments, Red Bull’s advisor, Dr. Helmut Marko, emphasized the strength of Ferrari’s performance in Melbourne, both in single laps and over longer distances. “We have to take Ferrari seriously here. They look extremely strong on one lap and in the long run,” Marko noted, revealing that Red Bull had been conserving power in comparison to Ferrari during the fast laps. Despite this, he pointed out that Ferrari, with Charles Leclerc at the forefront, demonstrated significant speed.

Marko also highlighted challenges faced by Verstappen during the sessions, including damage to the car’s underbody, which compromised their time for adjustments in the second session. “Max also damaged the underbody and a few other things relatively badly in the first session, which meant we had less time in the second one,” he explained.

Despite these setbacks, Marko revealed that the team was slightly lagging in the longer runs due to the limited time for fine-tuning but remained optimistic about closing the gap. “We were a little bit behind in the long run, but this is due to the lack of time. But it will be tight, especially if we don’t get the tuning under control,” he admitted, yet confidently concluded, “But I’m optimistic that we will succeed.”


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