Challenging Qualifying Session For Red Bull

MONZA, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 10: Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing prepares to drive in the garage during qualifying ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Italy at Autodromo di Monza on September 10, 2021 in Monza, Italy. (image courtesy Red Bull Racing)
MONZA, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 10: Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing prepares to drive in the garage during qualifying ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Italy at Autodromo di Monza on September 10, 2021 in Monza, Italy. (image courtesy Red Bull Racing)

With Max Verstappen in P3 and his teammate Sergio Perez in P10, it was a challenging opening day of the FORMULA 1 HEINEKEN GRAN PREMIO D’ITALIA 2021 ahead of tomorrow’s Sprint Qualifying Race.

Max Verstappen

“It wasn’t the best qualifying session but I think for us this track is always going to be difficult. We struggled a little bit more than we wanted to in FP1, but I think we recovered quite well throughout qualifying. I’m happy with third and it would have been unrealistic to hope for more. I think for the sprint race maybe we can be closer but you never know around here, so of course we will try and keep the pressure on. We’ve got FP2 tomorrow morning so we can see what we can do to help the long run pace a bit more but for us it will be more difficult around here with the long straights, nevertheless I hope we can score good points tomorrow.”

Sergio Perez

“We definitely struggled in qualifying today. Tomorrow our aim in the sprint race is to try to gain some positions and come through the field strong, I think this will be difficult with the DRS train though. Our long runs looked promising today and a lot of things can happen during a race so we’ll see what happens, I’m looking forward to it. We will try to optimise our performance for a strong race on Sunday.”

Christian Horner

“That’s a good team result, Checo has played a key role today. He did a great job giving Max the tow and allowing him the benefit of a hole in the air, it probably cost Checo half-a-second, and he should have been higher than where he is. So we are pretty happy with where we have finished. The sprint race tomorrow is going to be exciting and then of course we’ll see what happens in the race on Sunday. Max is on the right side of the grid tomorrow and will hopefully pick up a tow into turn one, so it’s going to make it a really exciting start, for what is effectively qualifying. The announcement has come out that Bottas has taken the engine penalty, so we know he’ll be at the back of the grid on Sunday, and we just have to see how the sprint race pans out. When a championship is so tight, and the gains are so marginal it’s about grabbing every point that you can, we’ve had a couple of good weeks in this triple header so far, so it’s important that we close off this stage with the momentum that we have built.”

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