Red Bull plays down Imola upgrade

8:20 am

Red Bull plays down Imola upgrade

After two failures in three races, Max Verstappen is determined to fight back with Red Bull. The team are said to have a major update at Imola to match Ferrari, but the Bulls themselves are playing down development and lowering expectations.

“I wouldn’t say a big package is planned, it’s all part of a development,” said team boss Christian Horner when asked if Red Bull had any major developments underway for Imola. .

“And obviously being a sprint race you have very little time to assess those things. So we have a session and then it’s qualifying. You have to be very confident about what you bring to the car.”

10:41 a.m.

Leclerc: Confidence in development

Charles Leclerc and Ferrari have had a dream start to the season but must continue to work hard to maintain their lead and have a chance at the World Championship. But the Monegasque is confident because he knows how Ferrari works behind the scenes.

“Over the past two years I have really seen a leap in the way we analyzed each weekend: in the way we also identified our weaknesses and how quickly we reacted to try to improve to improve in the areas where we were in trouble,” he says.

Keeping up with Red Bull in terms of development is tough, but: “I’m confident the team can do a great job of development this year.”


Reunion with Formulino

But the one we hope to see again on Friday is Formulino – also known as Imola Cat. The cat, who comes with his own VIP pass, roams the Imola paddock and has also hosted Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton in recent years.

Formulino even has his own Instagram channel, and because cat content is so popular, I even did a Formulino post last year, where you can read all about Imola’s lucky charm 😉

10:04 am

Friday drivers at Imola?

Reader Josefine asks if there will be the first Friday riders at Imola over the weekend, after all our board (here for a preview) is still completely empty in that regard.

Not all the teams have reported it yet, but I can be brief: no, there will be no drivers on Friday at Imola. It’s because of the sprint format. There is only one practice on Fridays, so no team is left to a youngster. Otherwise, the regular driver would have to start qualifying without any practice.

It will be the same in Miami afterwards. We don’t have a sprint there, but a brand new track. In Barcelona, ​​however, we count on the first missions.


Preview of Imola on the starting grid

Anyone who wants more information before imola can now listen to the latest edition of the Starting Grid podcast, in which moderators Kevin Scheuren and Sophie Affeldt, as well as our editor Christian Nimmervoll, who will be there this weekend, rejoice for the fourth round of the season, look ahead.

Topics include:
– What will happen to Sebastian Vettel?
– The big pressure for Ferrari
– Tuition fees for Mick Schumacher?
– Best of the rest super exciting again!

You can listen to it in our podcast area or at


Why not more San Marino GP?

Older Formula 1 fans (sorry, yes, really) still know Imola well as the San Marino Grand Prix, as the race was called from 1981 to 2006, because the Italian GP was already occupied by Monza by name. But since the return from Imola in 2020, the race has been called the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix.

Why did you choose a new name? Well, the reason for that is simply that you want to advertise the area Imola is in – not the independent state nearly 100 kilometers away, which Imola actually has nothing to do with.

Stefano Bonaccino, president of the region, clarified in 2020: “Imola has always been a natural place for Formula 1 and we have chosen to call it the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix, in tribute to our region, the country engines par excellence.”


RTL broadcasts its first race

Good news for all Formula 1 fans who don’t have a PayTV subscription: RTL will broadcast the race on Sunday on FreeTV! The Cologne private broadcaster broadcasts a total of four passages. In addition to Imola, there will be races at Silverstone, Zandvoort and Sao Paulo.

However, RTL only broadcasts the race. If you want to see the qualifications or the sprint, for example, you should use the well-known methods – or just take a look at our live ticker 😉

8:35 am

Horner: P2 good starting point

With two pole positions and two victories, Ferrari came out the best of the starting blocks and already has a good lead in the World Championship with Charles Leclerc (here in the general classification).

The Scuderia had the advantage that, unlike Red Bull, they could just cancel 2021 and weren’t in the World Cup fight. “Of course, they started this project much earlier than us, so we have some catching up to do,” says Horner.

“But the fact that we are catching second fastest is encouraging and I think we are starting to understand some of the issues we are having.”

8:14 a.m.

First sprint of the year

We can expect the first sprint race this weekend. This means we have to get used to a different format again. For all those who have already forgotten: there is only one practice session on Friday, followed by qualifying. On Saturday, there is a second practice session, followed by the sprint, whose starting grid is made up from qualifying.

The result of the sprint then determines the grid for Sunday’s race.

Friday 1:30 p.m.: 1st free trial
Friday 5:00 p.m.: Qualifying
Saturday 12:30 p.m.: 2nd free practice
Saturday 4:30 p.m.: Sprint
Sunday 3:00 p.m.: Race

8:10 a.m.

It’s race weekend!

Yes, I know we’re a day late, but our ticker was on its well-deserved Easter break until yesterday. I hope you had a good holiday so that we can now really start again.

Imola is on the program and we’re getting in the mood for the first European race of the season. This is what Norman Fischer is doing today on the ticker buttons, who welcomes you here very warmly.

Do you have any questions or comments? Then use the contact form or the hashtag #FragMST on Twitter.

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