Christian Horner is concerned about the danger and reward of Lewis Hamilton chasing Max Verstappen.
Christian Horner, Red Bull’s team principal, is determined to avoid a repetition of the British Grand Prix, which saw Max Verstappen on pole.
Red Bull CEO Christian Horner has issued a subliminal warning to Max Verstappen to prevent a repeat of the British Grand Prix, in which the Dutchman started on pole after dominating sprint qualifying, only to be pulled out at turn one by championship rival Lewis Hamilton.
Verstappen starts on pole for the main event on Sunday, despite not winning the sprint race after inheriting pole from Valtteri Bottas, in a scenario identical to the Silverstone weekend.
Hamilton, on the other hand, starts from fourth after a terrible start on Saturday and will have to cope with two McLarens before he can even challenge the title leader at the front.
Horner evaluated the risks of a hard battle in Monza, anticipating a fight from Hamilton’s Mercedes.
“When you get into those risk-reward scenarios, of course he’ll fight for the win,” Horner told Sky Sports F1.
“That’s his instinct, but at the end of the day, you have to be there for the chequered flag – we saw the implications of it at Silverstone, and we don’t want that to happen again after the sprint race.
“Of course, the goal is to turn pole position into a win, but I believe there will be some hurdles tomorrow.
Verstappen has taken Red Bull’s first pole position at Monza in the hybrid era, extending his lead over Lewis Hamilton to five points at the top of the standings.
Horner continued, “It was all prescribed from the beginning.”
“Max got off to a tremendous start, but Lewis got off to a bad start. We were able to take advantage of it.
“We were vulnerable to the fast-starting McLarens on the softs at the start, but we were able to cover it off. We were off to a fantastic start, then Lewis got stuck. Once you’ve completed turn two, you’re free to go.
“You know the soft tyre is worth around four metres, so why wouldn’t they be on the front row with a soft tyre?”
“Mercedes will be in the same boat.”
Verstappen, on the other hand, was pleased with their performance, but expressed reservations about Mercedes’ pace, despite one beginning. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”