Max Verstappen says Red Bull seems to execute race weekends better than Ferrari after his two wins in three races heading into the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Ina Austria, Verstappen passed Charles Leclerc in the closing stages to take victory (pictured), while Sebastian Vettel suffered a turbo issue in qualifying and started out of position. At Hockenheim, both Ferraris had trouble on Saturday and had to fight through the field, with Verstappen winning a rain-affected race from second on the grid, and while he believes the cars are closely matched the Dutchman thinks Red Bull does a better job over the course of a weekend.
“I’m not so sure (who is quickest) — normally Ferrari would have taken pole at Hockenheim,” Verstappen said. “We just seem to execute the weekend better than them and bring the results back.
“They are very fast, some tracks a bit faster than other tracks — with longer straights, they seem dominant. We’ll see this weekend. It’s still not very clear where we are. One thing is for sure, Mercedes is still ahead. That’s what we have to target.”
While the Hungaroring has traditionally been a strong circuit for Red Bull, Verstappen says the performance of Mercedes this season should not be overlooked.
“I don’t think we are favorites, but we’ll try to do a good job. Mercedes have been the most dominant so far this season. After last weekend, I’m sure they will come here trying to bounce back from that. We know they have a good car. We need to make sure we have a good setup and then hopefully we can be close to them.
“As a team, we can handle the pressure well in those (Hockenheim) conditions, especially in the pit stops where we seem to be really strong this year again. Putting pressure on, they might make a mistake — you finish first they finish second, you’re not gaining a lot of points.
“For them, being more than 60 points in the lead is massive. Yes they had a bad weekend — there are unlucky moments. It’s still a big gap to close. I’ll try, but I’m not focused on the title fight. I just see every weekend as an opportunity to do well.”