Christian Horner issued a challenge to Max Verstappen, saying, “If we beat them here, we’ll beat them elsewhere.”
For the French Grand Prix on Sunday, Max Verstappen will start from pole position, ahead of Lewis Hamilton.
After Max Verstappen achieved pole position ahead of the French Grand Prix, Red Bull chief Christian Horner said that if they can beat Mercedes at Paul Ricard, they can “beat them anywhere.”
Verstappen gave Lewis Hamilton a strong warning ahead of the race by securing his second pole position of the season at Paul Ricard, a first for Red Bull in France.
After a 1:29.990s lap, the Dutchman claimed his fifth career pole position, 0.258s faster than Hamilton in second and Valtteri Bottas in third.
On a circuit that should favor Mercedes, whose strength appears to be their aerodynamics, with their straight-line speed proving a significant advantage.
Nonetheless, with Verstappen’s Red Bull nearly two tenths faster than the Mercedes, his boss believes they have a decent chance on Sunday.
“It obviously boosts our confidence, but we’ll see what happens tomorrow,” Horner told Sky Sports F1.
“However, this circuit has been such a stronghold for Mercedes in recent years that if we can beat them here, we can beat them anywhere,” he says.
“Obviously, there’s a lot on the line, but the entire crew is working really hard and long hours.
“This year is tricky because we have the current car, the next year’s car, the cost cap, and everything else going on.
“However, seeing the entire squad come together as a unit and putting this pressure on Mercedes is phenomenal.”
Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez will start fourth on the grid, just behind the two Mercedes and Valtteri Bottas in third.
However, Verstappen’s quickest lap lighted up the timing displays, resulting in purple sector numbers, which indicate the fastest lap time in that session’s sector, and Horner explained why.
“You can probably see by the size of the rear wing between us and Mercedes that we’ve taken a little of downforce out of the car,” Horner continued.
“We’re using less energy in sector two, so we’re driving faster down the straight because there’s less resistance, but we’re still managing to do very well in sector three, so that’s helping us achieve a competitive lap time around here,” says the driver.
“Hopefully, things will be fine for tomorrow’s race.”
Verstappen is the current championship leader. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”