Red Bull: Verstappen win at Mercedes stronghold 'a big one'

Christian Horner says Max Verstappen's triumph in Austin – a hunting ground historically dominated by the mighty Mercedes... The post Red Bull: Verstappen win at Mercedes stronghold 'a big one' appeared first on F1i.com.

Red Bull: Verstappen win at Mercedes stronghold 'a big one'

Christian Horner says Max Verstappen's triumph in Austin – a hunting ground historically dominated by the mighty Mercedes team – was "a big one" for Red Bull.

A flawless performance in the US Grand Prix coupled with a bold undercut strategy allowed Verstappen to overturn an early deficit to Hamilton and then fend off the seven-time world champion to conquer his eighth win of the 2021 season.

The triumph puts the Dutchman 12 points clear of his rival in the Drivers' championship with five rounds to go while Red Bull reduced its gap to Mercedes in the Constructors' standings to 23 points.

"This is a big one because it has been such a stronghold of Lewis and Mercedes," said Horner.

"To get the pole was a landmark moment for us and then to convert it into a win even though we weren’t leading at the end of the first lap."

While the battle between F1's top two protagonists was fought on the track and won by a "phenomenal" Verstappen, Horner also underscored the crucial strategic dimension of the race at the Circuit of the Americas.

"I think we were quicker on the Medium tyre and Max could see that Lewis was sliding around a lot and we were in danger of overheating our own tyres by being stuck so we decided to take the gamble and bag some free air," added the Red Bull team boss.

"It was then going to put us under pressure at the end of the race as it was inevitable that Mercedes would run long.

"We were able to push them to pit early in the first stint by getting Checo in as well.

"Of course, they then had the ability to go long in the middle stint to give them an eight-lap tyre advantage to the end of the race.

"Max did a fantastic job managing the degradation and having enough rear tyres left for those crucial final five laps when Lewis was looming large. A phenomenal performance by him."

  • Read also: Verstappen wasn't sure 'aggressive' strategy would work

Horner admitted enduring a stressful finale on the Red Bull pitwall, especially when Verstappen caught up with backmarker Mick Schumacher on the penultimate lap.

Although the Dutchman lost time to Hamilton as he was running in the wake of the Haas, there was a silver lining to his plight.

"Mick on the last lap cost us, but he also gave us DRS – he nearly gave me a heart attack as well," Horner said.

"But Max just managed to keep enough in hand and that was a classy, classy drive, a crucial drive.

"I think I’ve aged about 25 years in that race. I really didn’t think we could hang on at the end there because it was such a long stint and we were out of tyres.

"For him to protect the tyres, hang in there and be quick where he needed to be, he deserves that victory today."

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via and

The post Red Bull: Verstappen win at Mercedes stronghold 'a big one' appeared first on F1i.com.

Source : F1 i More   

What's Your Reaction?

like
0
dislike
0
love
0
funny
0
angry
0
sad
0
wow
0

Next Article

Sainz unhappy with stewards 'playing with positions' in US GP

Carlos Sainz says he was confused and unhappy with a call by the stewards in the US Grand... The post Sainz unhappy with stewards 'playing with positions' in US GP appeared first on F1i.com.

Sainz unhappy with stewards 'playing with positions' in US GP

Carlos Sainz says he was confused and unhappy with a call by the stewards in the US Grand Prix that ordered him to swap positions with a McLaren to which he believed he had already yielded.

Sainz enjoyed a frantic scrap with both Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris on the opening lap of the race, initially gaining the upper hand over the pair before settling in between the McLaren duo.

Sainz had purposefully yielded to Ricciardo, fearing a call from the stewards a dicey wheel-to-wheel fight with the Aussie.

The call did indeed come but it was an order for him to relinquish his position to Norris, not Ricciardo, a decision the Spaniard vehemently contested as it ultimately set him back not one, but two positions in the running order.

"On Lap 1 there was a bit of a mess with the two McLarens, fighting the two of them, trying to defend, and in the end I made it ahead of them but I decided to let by one of them just in case the stewards were going to take action," Sainz told Sky F1.

"And in the end, they even took action even though I let them by. "A bit confusing to be honest and I don’t like how they play with the positions, because I think what I actually did - letting by one of them - was already quite genuine and should have been enough."

Sainz eventually gained an upper hand over Norris but despite his best efforts, the Ferrari charger was unable to overhaul Ricciardo for fifth, his strategic undercut attempt squandered by a slow pitstop executed by the Scuderia.

"I had to pass Lando and then I was stuck the whole race behind Ricciardo and we pulled the trigger for an undercut.

"But again, another slow pit stop didn’t allow us to undercut, and we got stuck again behind him. A pretty bad race for me."

  • Read also: Leclerc salutes 'incredible performance' in 'boring' US GP

During his spirited battle with Ricciardo, the Spaniard noted on the radio in the heat of the moment that the McLaren driver's defensive driving was "a bit dirty".

But Sainz, who went on to finish P7 after conceding a position to Valtteri Bottas on the penultimate lap of the race, later admitted that the Aussie's antics were just par for the course.

"My take is that the guy on the inside does this kind of thing on purpose always to try and squeeze the guy on the outside, I would have done the same," he explained.

"The thing is that it could have been rough with the contact, I think he could have done it a bit cleaner because I nearly spun, but it’s all good, I would have done a similar thing if I was in his position.

"It was a good battle, just we should have been ahead with the pit stop that we did to undercut him, and in the end we were again behind. We shouldn’t have been there."

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via and

The post Sainz unhappy with stewards 'playing with positions' in US GP appeared first on F1i.com.

Source : F1 i More   

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.