Max Verstappen admits he wanted to disappear from the pole position and drive his race in France, but that it didn’t go that way in Formula 1 and that they had to take risks and work hard to beat Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes.
Verstappen got off to a good start after winning the second pole position this season but lost the lead after a mistake in the second corner although he regained the lead after the first tire changes thanks to an earlier entry into boxing.
Although Mercedes drivers pressed him at the time, Verstappen successfully retained the lead, and then Red Bull opted for a second tire change for fear that the tires would not last until the end if they continued to press as before.
This proved to be the right move even though only Leclerc went into the box twice as Verstappen managed to catch and overtake both Mercedes drivers and team-mate Perez for a third win this season. “Winning this race is an amazing team effort, and having a double podium on a track like this shows how hard we worked,” Verstappen said.
"Of course I wanted to disappear and cruise at my own pace, but that's not often the case in Formula One and we really had to work hard for this win." “You can see how close the two strongest teams are, and celebrating with strategy, two rounds before the end, is very satisfying.
It certainly wasn't easy and I lost the back end in the first lap so I had to get off the track and lose position to Lewis. ”
“Of course I was upset then, but I knew the race was long and I had to stay focused.
In the first section, I didn’t have the speed to fight Lewis so we took a risk and got into boxing first." "But honestly, we didn’t expect to be able to overtake him. After that, they pressured me, but luckily I managed to stay in front and I knew I must not make a mistake.
" “We decided on two stops, which turned out well because the conditions of the end of the race with less wind and more tires on the track suited our car." "In the end, we pulled the right moves for both cars and it’s great to be on the podium with Chec.
We all need to enjoy this for a few days until we get to Austria where everything starts all over again. ” This was the first race in which Verstappen and Perez were together on the podium for Red Bull which increased their advantage in the constructors ’standings to 37 points.
At the same time, this is the second race this season after Portugal in which Red Bull and Mercedes took the first four places.