Max Verstappen keen not to ‘overdramatise’ F1’s porpoising problem in subtle dig at Mercedes

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Max Verstappen keen not to ‘overdramatise’ F1’s porpoising problem in subtle dig at Mercedes
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Max Verstappen has said Formula One does not need to “overdramatise” the issue of porpoising following complaints from some drivers, including Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, that it could pose a long-term injury risk.

The ‘bouncing’ of cars along straights has been one of the main issues this season following the overhaul of rules and regulations, with some teams suffering more from the phenomenon than others.

Mercedes have been particularly affected, with Russell warning of the potential “health consequences” of porpoising while Hamilton endured the “most painful race” of his career in Baku after suffering from severe back pain due to the bouncing.

It led to the FIA introducing a controversial technical directive in an attempt to fix the problem, but Red Bull have reacted angrily as out of all the teams on the grid they have been the least affected by porpoising due to the design of their car.

Red Bull have won the last six races, with Verstappen opening up his lead in the drivers standings to 46 points after winning the Canadian Grand Prix on Sunday. The team are hesitant to make changes and, in an apparent dig at Mercedes, Verstappen said the issue is not as significant as some teams are suggesting.

“For sure, the porpoising we have at the moment is not nice and I don’t think is correct,” Verstappen said. “But some teams are able to handle these things a lot better than others, so it is possible to get rid of it. So I don’t think we have to overdramatise what is happening at the moment.”

Verstappen also dismissed safety concerns over ‘porpoising’ by suggesting that injury risks are part of sport. “There are a lot of sports out there where I think you damage your body in general,” the defending champion said. “Once you retire from your career, you won’t be like you were when you were 20, that’s simply how it is.

“Football players have problems with their knees, all sorts of injuries. Or when you’re a Motocross rider or Moto GP rider, the amount of bones they’ve broken in their body. You can always judge, ‘yeah is that the safest thing to do?’ No, but we are willing to take risk, that’s our sport, that’s what I love to do.”

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