Max Verstappen Happy With Long-Run Pace

2021 Austrian Grand Prix, Friday - Max Verstappen (image courtesy Red Bull Racing)

Despite finishing behind the Mercedes duo in FP2 on Day 1 of the FORMULA 1 BWT GROSSER PREIS VON ÖSTERREICH 2021, Max Verstappen was satisfied with the day, as he feels his long-run pace was on target to deliver a good race result, and that improvements can be made for single-lap pace ahead of qualifying.

For his teammate Sergio Perez, who could only finish P8 and P11 across the two sessions, there is plenty of work to be done before qualifying…

Max Verstappen Keeps Eyes On The Prize

After dominating every session last time out, Max Verstappen was comfortable seeing the improvements Mercedes had made on short runs, confident in the knowledge that he would still be faster come race day.

‘From our side we didn’t have a perfect run in FP2 but nevertheless I felt good in the car and there are no real problems. Mercedes looked quite quick on the soft so we just have to make sure we have a little more pace on that compound because we looked stronger on the medium and in the long runs, which at the end of the day is the most important for the race. We also tested the new Pirelli prototype tyre which seemed to be fine. It did get quite greasy out there but luckily it was good enough to keep on driving so we had a good read on the long run pace. I think it will be tight again this weekend as it looks like Mercedes improved a bit but we will see tomorrow in qualifying and the most important thing is to make sure we look after the softer compounds in the race,’ said Verstappen.

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2021 Austrian Grand Prix, Friday – Max Verstappen (image courtesy Red Bull Racing)

Sergio Perez Taking Friday Lessons Into Saturday

Although he finished well behind his teammate, Sergio Perez is taking a lot of valuable lessons into Saturday’s all-important qualifying session.

‘The long runs were definitely more promising today but there’s still a lot of work to do. Both sessions were quite tough and I’m not feeling fully comfortable with the car on the softer compound yet. We need to analyse the data tonight to try and get the pace back to where we would expect it to be, ready for qualifying tomorrow. We seemed to be quite far away from the balance with the low fuel but we corrected that quite quickly, we were also seeing less degradation on these tyres too which is good. It’s good to see Pirelli bringing a new tyre to test this weekend before we use them at Silverstone. Overall, I learnt a lot from today and it’s great to see all of the fans here at the Red Bull Ring and hopefully we can have a good qualifying tomorrow and a solid race on Sunday,’ added Perez.

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