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Verstappen forced into MAJOR change after suffering fire damage

Verstappen forced into MAJOR change after suffering fire damage

Verstappen forced into MAJOR change after suffering fire damage

Verstappen forced into MAJOR change after suffering fire damage

Red Bull have had to make a significant change to Max Verstappen's car ahead of qualifying after an engine issue prematurely ended his Friday practice.

Smoke was seen trailing from the back of the reigning champion's RB20 in FP2, which was later revealed to be a issue with the energy recovery system (ERS).

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Verstappen has not had the ideal start to his Canadian Grand Prix weekend, as rain hampered any meaningful running before his early FP2 exit.

The Dutchman leads the championship going into the Montreal race, although that gap closed last time out with Charles Leclerc's win in Monaco.

Max Verstappen has had limited running at the Canadian Grand Prix
Max Verstappen had to battle the rain before his ERS issue

What damage did Max Verstappen have?

Verstappen took no further part in FP2 after his ERS issue, and Red Bull mechanics got to work immediately to diagnose the root of the problem.

To mitigate any risk, Red Bull have confirmed they changed the engine on Verstappen's car as a 'precaution'.

"We changed the engine on Max’s car as a precaution and will investigate the problem in the coming days," the team wrote on X.

READ MORE: F1 team announce driver REPLACEMENT for Canadian GP

Given Red Bull are still planning to look into the issue further, it appears that the engine which was replaced could still be used again this season if there are no serious issues.

However, if it cannot be salvaged, Verstappen will be one step closer to taking a penalty for using an extra power unit if he needs to take new engines later in the campaign (each driver is permitted four per season).

The ERS is responsible for harvesting and deploying energy through an electric motor, which can give drivers additional speed when looking to overtake or push harder.

READ MORE: FIA faces MAJOR dilemma ahead of Canadian Grand Prix

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