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Verstappen suffers second retirement in F1 title defence

Verstappen suffers second retirement in F1 title defence

Verstappen suffers second retirement in F1 title defence

Verstappen suffers second retirement in F1 title defence

Max Verstappen's F1 title defence was dealt another blow in the Australian Grand Prix after the Red Bull driver retired for the second time this year.

Verstappen had started second behind championship leader Charles Leclerc and was appeared comfortable in the position for the first 38 laps despite lacking the pace of his Ferrari rival.

On lap 39, however, the Dutch driver was instructed to stop his engine after reporting via team radio he could "smell some weird fluid".

The retirement, following on from the one he suffered in the season-opener in Bahrain, promoted Verstappen's Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez into second.

Concerned for his own car, the Mexican asked what the issue had been with Verstappen's RB18 to which he was informed: "Don't worry about Max, it's not relevant for our car."

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