Max Verstappen took out his Singapore Grand Prix frustrations by beating his engineer at padel tennis, reveals Christian Horner… as Red Bull chief hails the Dutchman’s ‘maturity’ after his winning run ended
- Max Verstappen had won 10 races in a row ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix
- However, the world champion finished in fifth place to end his imperious streak
- Red Bull chief Christian Horner revealed how he got over the disappointment
An angry Max Verstappen took his frustrations out on the padel tennis court following his Singapore Grand Prix performance, Christian Horner has revealed.
Verstappen finished a lowly – by his standards – fifth at the Marina Bay Circuit last weekend, a result that ended his imperious run of 10-straight Formula One victories.
The Dutchman is back with a vengeance in Suzuka and put in a jaw-dropping drive in the first practice session, finishing 0.626 seconds clear of Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, the man who took top spot from him in Singapore.
Red Bull team principal Horner opened up on how Verstappen dealt with his disappointment in the days leading up to the Japanese Grand Prix.
‘Max was super clear last weekend, he was constructive in the debrief, he was constructive all week,’ Horner said. ‘He took his frustration out on the padel tennis courts with his engineers, beating GP [Gianpiero Lambiase, Verstappen’s chief engineer], which didn’t go down well!
Max Verstappen took his frustrations out via padel tennis after his Singapore GP performance
Verstappen had won 10 races in a row before his disappointing fifth place finish in Singapore
‘But he’s been very constructive in his approach and I think he knew it was always going to come to an end at some point, it was just a question of when. That tenth victory meant a lot to him, and certainly to the team so I’m glad Singapore wasn’t the 10th race in that succession of races.
‘He has shown great leadership, great maturity in the way that he handled it. Of course, everybody was disappointed last weekend, you get used to winning and it is a good reminder of how much it hurts to lose and if it doesn’t hurt to lose, you’re in the wrong business.
‘It was a good reminder of that. We took an awful lot of lessons last weekend.’
Verstappen is a keen player of padel, a sport originating in Mexico and played on an enclosed tennis court. Last month, he shared a photo on Instagram following a session with fellow F1 drivers Lando Norris, George Russell and Alex Albon.
‘Recently I discovered a bit of padel,’ he told Sports Illustrated earlier this year. ‘I don’t like tennis, but padel is a bit more fun for me and probably a bit easier to get into as well when you are a beginner.’
Verstappen is a fan of padel and last month shared a photo on Instagram following a session with fellow F1 drivers Lando Norris, George Russell and Alex Albon
Red Bull chief Christian Horner also hailed Verstappen’s maturity after his winning run ended
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