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F1 | “Without DRS we would be driving in a train” claimed Verstappen after being stuck behind a slower Mercedes

Despite the introduction of new regulations which aimed at making races more thrilling, Max Verstappen recognizes that this generation of cars still needs the DRS system.

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F1 | “Without DRS we would be driving in a train” claimed Verstappen after being stuck behind a slower Mercedes
Fuente imagen: formula1.com

Formula One’s new technical regulations, which entered into force starting from this season, aimed at building cars that generate more downforce from the floor and therefore rely less on undisturbed air flowing over the wings.

What we have seen so far in the seven opening Grand Prix is that such rules have successfully allowed cars to follow each other much closer in faster corners; however, this hasn’t necessarily translated into more wheel-to-wheel actions and overtaking.

Verstappen acknowledged that most of the action still comes from the DRS system. According to the reigning World Champion, DRS is absolutely necessary for this generation of cars as, without the system in place, races would still be essentially processional.

"Well, if it's not [on the car] anymore then we are just driving in a train, I think I demonstrated that it's really frustrating, so you need DRS at the moment with the cars," commented Verstappen after suffering DRS issues that forced him to stay stuck behind George Russell's slower Mercedes in Spain.

Verstappen claims that the positive effect of having less dirty air was partially counterbalanced by the reduced drag characterizing this generation of cars, which punch a smaller hole in the air for following cars to slipstream behind.

He added: "We can follow a little bit easier but once you're behind, I do think the drag is a little bit less, like you don't have that slipstream effect like last year, for example. And then you still need a DRS to be able to have a go into Turn 1."

Chief engineer Paul Monaghan is confident Red Bull's DRS issue has been permanently solved after a quick fix in Spain didn't work but explained that Baku's fast straights will pose the true test.

He cautioned that "Baku presents slightly different problems" so it would be "foolish to rest on our laurels".

The DRS system plays a key role in this weekend's Azerbaijan Grand Prix, as Baku's slow corners and long straights imply that drivers will likely find it easier to stay within the required one-second margin in order to actuate the system.

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