Max Verstappen admits of being hugely frustrated with the pit stop in F1 US GP, but was overall pleased to have managed to pass rivals to win.

For Red Bull, the F1 US GP weekend saw their first constructors’ title since the glory days of Sebastian Vettel between 2010 and 2013. A win for Verstappen sealed it for them and individually, it was 13th win of the season for him equaling the current record. Aside from that, it was an emotional weekend with the passing of Dietrich Mateschitz.

They started the grand prix keeping him in mind and Verstappen readily had a good run in the first half until the pit stop issue. His second stop was a nightmare where he lost 11 seconds and the lead to Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and second place to Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc which he had to fight against and get back in.

At that moment of trouble, Verstappen certainly wasn’t in the mood even though he already has the 2022 title in the bag. “A lot of swear words,” he said. “I was very upset. But immediately when you press the pit limiter off you have to keep your head down and go for it. But it wasn’t made easy. But luckily this track is amazing to race at as well. So it’s not like some other tracks where then your race is over”.

“This is a proper racetrack where you can pass. And also you see the first time I tried on Charles, you know, this Turn 1 is so wide but then, you know, if he opens up, there are different lines to come back at you,” summed up Verstappen, who opened up on the fights against Leclerc and Hamilton as he really wanted to win after that pit moment.

“I mean, obviously for us it’s been a tough weekend and we really wanted to win,” said Verstappen. “And I mean, everything was looking great, but with that final stop, that 11-second pitstop that was not the best, after, of course… The field was quite close because of the Safety Cars. So yeah, we had to recover quite a bit.

“Initially I had a good battle with Charles and once I got ahead I felt like I damaged my tyres a little bit too much in the beginning of that new tyre set, so the first few laps I was not really catching like I wanted to Lewis. But then I think once I recovered with the tyres then I could close in a bit, step by step. And then of course, yeah, I went for the move into 12. And it was a tough few laps to get him out of the DRS”.

“In general, I think throughout the race, you could see it also when I passed Charles, he could stay in the DRS for a few laps around here. And it seemed like it was quite powerful. So it was not made easy for us, but at the end, of course, extremely happy to win on this difficult weekend for us,” summed up Verstappen.

It ended up being a tactical and intelligent win where for his final stint, he switched to the medium compound, different from those around him. There were deliberations with the team about the tyres but Verstappen and co decided to take the yellow ones which fortunately lasted enough despite the fights he had.

“They kept asking me throughout the race what I thought between the tyres? And yeah, I think through my feedback I guess they chose the Medium,” he said. “And I think it was right. I don’t think at the end of the day, it would have mattered a lot, because I think we were quick on the Medium and the Hard. But the Medium just lasted long enough to the end.”

Despite this, initially, Verstappen looked to struggle a little on that last stint after getting past the remaining Ferrari of Leclerc, however, a quick recovery followed. He actually couldn’t shed off both Leclerc and Hamilton off his DRS quickly which was an interesting scenario and situation.

“Well, the tyres just run really hot,” started Verstappen. “They’re also new, so they still need to come up to temperature. Then being behind the car in high speed corners, you have to turn always a bit more which is not great for the tyre. So once you’re in clean air, then automatically they cool down a bit. So just took a few laps”.

“And yeah, I think it was good. Like I said before, the track really lets you do that as well, because it’s quite wide. These kind of corners, you can really brake deep into the corner, and then the other car can come back at you in the exit, especially from 12 to 15. Like one car can go really tight and defend, the other one can really open it up. So, I think it was good racing,” summed up Verstappen, who credited the whole team for remaining in the right mind despite the loss of Mateschitz.

“I think this was actually a race he would have loved to see,” said Verstappen. “So yeah, of course, I’m sad but I’m also incredibly proud of the whole team and also the way they’ve operated all weekend. Of course apart from the pit stop but that was a gun failure and these things unfortunately can happen”.

“But yeah, we kept it together and we won also the Constructors’. I’m very proud of everyone also… You know, the people who don’t even come to the track, back at the factory, you know, the effort they have put into this car as well this year has been enormous. And I’m very proud of everyone, you know, to secure this.”

Here’s the video of the slow stop:

Here’s all the details regarding the dismissal of protest against Red Bull

Here’s how F1 US GP panned out