The pace of Red Bull is currently ahead of Mercedes based on Friday’s showing at the Mexico City Grand Prix, according to Lewis Hamilton
Valtteri Bottas led a Mercedes one-two in FP1 with Max Verstappen third ahead of Sergio Perez, but Verstappen jumped over 0.4s clear of the Mercedes pair in the second session. Hamilton says Mercedes simply doesn’t have the raw performance its rival does, after being relatively satisfied with his day’s work on Friday.
“The car is generally feeling OK, we’ve not really had any major issues,” Hamilton said. “I think we’re giving it absolutely everything we’ve got and it’s just that they’re quicker than us at the moment. We’ve got no real concerns. Just chipping away at our setup and trying to improve it but we’re lacking downforce which is probably why we had that half a second difference between us.
“It’s looking good for us to be able to try and battle these guys but they’re definitely too quick for us at the moment.”
Verstappen admits the picture is a positive one for Red Bull so far, but says the team needs to maintain its performance on Saturday.
“Yeah it was quite a good day,” Verstappen said. “Of course always trying to improve the car, trying to make it feel better. Also, in FP1, the track was very dirty, so in FP2 that was already a bit nicer. It seemed like the car is working quite well. There’s a few things of course to look at, but it’s pretty good.”
“It’s always difficult to tell (if there’s more to come), but we are never happy and will always try to improve … We have a good feeling but of course tomorrow we need to be there as well. So, we’ll look into a lot of things but it’s a positive start to the weekend.”