Max Verstappen offers opinion on Carlos Sainz keeping his position after the red flag restart at Monaco

F1 Grand Prix of Monaco - Qualifying
Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing talks to the media in the Paddock after qualifying ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco on May 25, 2024 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Max Verstappen believes that Carlos Sainz keeping his place in the Monaco GP after the red flag is a debatable issue. Speaking to media including Sportskeeda, the Dutchman felt that most of the cars had crossed the first sector apart from Zhou Guanyu, which made it a tough call.

On Lap 1, Sainz was seen locking up and sliding to the bottom of the grid, but the red flag brought out due to Sergio Perez’ accident reinstated him into fourth place on the grid. The judgement by the race direction was odd given that he ended up on the podium. Max Verstappen felt that it is an odd situation because Zhou being stuck on track and not clearing the first sector could be one of the reasons for the position being reinstated.

Asked about his opinion on Sainz rejoining the grid at the position he started despite the off track moment, Max Verstappen said:

“I think, well, I mean I need to look into the rules for my feeling, like you know the red flag was already quite late. It was not like an immediate red flag. A lot of people already crossed I think sector one or even almost got into sector two. I think it was only Zhou that got stuck at the accident. But there was also a medical car that he had to wait for so yeah, there's it's always debatable, I would say.”

Asked if it was fair, he added:

“It depends on how you look at it. Of course from my side there probably have a different view. If you are of course the one that (it) happens to you. Well, that's how it should be, because not everyone, of course - because I think it was quite a big impact with Checo and Kevin, and luckily, they just all jumped out of the car.”

Max Verstappen believes there needs to be a solution for the Monaco GP circuit layout

Max Verstappen, like many of the other drivers, felt that the Monaco circuit needs tweaking or the format needs change. He feels that there need to be changes made to the circuit to make it more race-worthy and allow room for overtaking. The reigning champion stated that he would not mind giving his inputs on finding solutions for the circuit layout.

Known for his opinion on trackside matters, the Dutchman has always been vocal on ways to improve the sport, especially on the racing side. He feels modern F1 cars have made racing worse due to their width and weight.

Asked what he thought of the Monaco GP and its layout, Max Verstappen said:

“I mean we all know this right, that in Monaco it's like this. I have to say that probably over the last few years, compared to the years before, it's even more difficult, because of the weight of the cars, but it's nothing new. We always know that this happens in Monaco.”

Asked what he would like to change, he said:

“I don't know, first of all, I would like to just try and give this possibility to maybe change a few little things, because it will make the excitement even better, right. Because I think overall the weekend is really cool just Sunday is a little bit boring, unfortunately, but the scenery is of course still great. If we can find a way to race a bit better, why not? That would be probably my preferred solution.”

Asked if it's the layout that needs tweaks, Max Verstappen answered:

“Yeah, of course you can't pass at the moment.”

Asked if he would involve himself in the talks, he replied:

“Yeah, of course if they will ask my opinion, I will try to see what is possible. But it also depends on what roads that you are going to take.”

Currently, the bigger worry for Max Verstappen is the functioning of his own RB20 at tracks like these where the surface is abrasive and bumpy. The Australian GP, Imola and Monaco races have exposed Red Bull’s Achilles heel which according to the Dutch champion is an issue that is to be yet resolved.

As it stands, the last two race outcomes have reduced the drivers’ championship margin down to 31 points between the triple world champion and Charles Leclerc. In the constructors' championship, Red Bull lead Ferrari by a narrow margin of 24 points.

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