Max Verstappen is looking forward to the new engine that he has available in Italy this weekend. The Red Bull Racing driver expects a lot from the Honda power source.

"This must be a step forward for us. In terms of power, this engine will bring us closer to Mercedes, although closing the gap with Ferrari in that area remains a difficult story," he told various media, including the AD .

"But at least it's another step forward. One of the bigger steps we've taken so far, in terms of power. I think the biggest ever since working with Honda."

The engine change gives the 21-year-old Verstappen a grid penalty, which means that he will start at the back of the Grand Prix at Monza, the circuit where Red Bull is normally short of Ferrari and Mercedes.

See also: Five questions about Italy GP: "With grid penalty, Verstappen can become fifth"

"Fifth place would be good result"

Verstappen is not afraid that the new engine will cause problems. "Honda knows very well where the limit is, so I'm not afraid of that," said the Limburger, who does not expect a podium place.

"I really do not assume that I will just be back on the podium again. But if I can drive back to fifth place without crazy incidents, then that is just a good result."

Some rain is expected in Italy and Verstappen would be happy. "That could certainly help, yes. But first, wait. They predicted some rain on Wednesday, but on Thursday they were already talking about less rainfall."

The first free practice at Monza is Friday at 11 a.m., followed by the second practice session at 3 p.m. Saturday the third training (12.00) and qualification (15.00) and the race will start at 15.10 on Sunday.

See also: Result GP Belgium and World Cup positions in Formula 1