Jul 14, 2021, 8:15 AM
Max Verstappen is hopeful that Red Bull will be able to continue to be domineering on tracks other than the Red Bull Ring, such as the fast Silverstone track on the schedule this week.
After his two successes on the Red Bull Ring, Max Verstappen believes Red Bull needs to keep working to make sure their car isn’t just domineering on one circuit. Well launched in its conquest of title, the championship leader now wishes to continue to take the measure of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes at Silverstone.
Verstappen is now 32 points ahead of his British rival at the top of the drivers’ standings, having secured back-to-back victories in Austria in the last two contested GP weekends. The Dutchman took pole position in both races, a rare occurrence for Red Bull Racing since the start of the hybrid era, and he led the 142 laps completed in both races. He also signed the first hat-trick of his career over a weekend, recording the fastest lap of the Austrian Grand Prix.
Red Bull’s domineering display led Hamilton to solicit from his team the provision of an efficient evolution of his W12, to accompany his attempt to turn the tide after failing to win one of the last five races to date. ; Red Bull Racing had a full success during this period, with one success for Sergio Pérez and four for Verstappen, three of them in a row.
As for Verstappen, although he “appreciate” Naturally his current wave of success, he feels that Red Bull must continue to work to ensure that his car is able to repeat its performance on circuits with very different characteristics to come.
“I am […] focused on the rest of the season “, declares the leader of the championship. “It’s still very long, and there are still a lot of points to score. We have to make sure that we are back on top every weekend and basically use the car to its full potential. We had a good car in the race. Austria, I think she was very domineering. But we have to make sure that we will be there again at Silverstone. That’s what we’re going to look at now, to make sure that we are once again very competitive there. “
Silverstone will host the British Grand Prix next weekend and see Mercedes bring the final evolution of the season for its W12, while also marking the debut of F1’s Sprint Qualifying weekend format. The circuit has traditionally been the preserve of Mercedes, who have won seven of the last nine races held there. Verstappen won there personally at the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix last year.
Christian Horner, director of the Red Bull team, ironically points out that he is “pity not to have more races” in Austria, and that Silverstone will mark a very different challenge for his team. “Now we are heading for a circuit that has really been a stronghold of Mercedes for the past seven years.”, he says. “It’s a different challenge with the introduction of sprint racing, a different format this weekend. Obviously Mercedes has been very strong at it over the years, and Lewis also has the support of his country. so this is a big challenge. “
To succeed, Red Bull can in any case count on a Honda power unit which has made major progress compared to previous years, so much so that some observers now see it as the best on the grid. Helmut Marko, in an interview with Motorsport-Total, a media affiliated with Motorsport.com, is however skeptical: “I don’t think so. We are at Mercedes’ level in many areas. You have to differentiate between the combustion engine and the electric motor. We still have the feeling that Mercedes is better at recovery. But the difference is small now. . “