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Horner: Verstappen leading Red Bull development

  • Published on 29 May 2019 16:24
  • comments 10
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Christian Horner is impressed by Max Verstappen's growth as Red Bull relies on the Dutchman to develop the RB15.

Verstappen has had a strong start to the 2019 season, picking up two podiums and four fourth-place finishes. 

With Verstappen now the most experienced member in the driver line-up at Red Bull following the departure of Daniel Ricciardo to Renault, Horner says he has been doing a strong job for it.

“I think really, if you wind the clock back 12 months, Monaco was probably the lowest weekend, last year, of his career, having a car capable of winning and crashing in FP3 and not being able to take part in qualifying,” said the Red Bull team principal.

“That was very tough for him and I think he went away from that race and he reflected hard on it.

“Since Montreal last year he’s really just stepped things up a gear and he’s been a phenomenal force whenever he’s been in the car. The way he started this season has been outstanding.

"He’s overachieved in certain aspects and I think he’s got that roundedness of maturity and is very much leading the team development-wise.

“I think he’s enjoying and relishing that role as well, so if you compare Max to the equivalent time last year, he’s evolved a tremendous amount and I think that’s again the benefit of experience as well.”

Horner commends Verstappen's drive in Monaco

Speaking about his race in Monaco, Horner believes Verstappen extracted everything he could from the weekend.

The 21-year-old battled Lewis Hamilton for the lead of the race, but couldn't pass the Mercedes driver. He dropped back to fourth after his penalty for an unsafe release was implemented. 

"Max drove the wheels off the car. He got away in grid position and had a look at passing Bottas into Turn 1 but wasn’t quite far enough alongside.

"The mechanics did a great job with the pit stop and Max left the box before Bottas which, as per the rules, is fine.

"Unfortunately, it all got a bit too tight resulting in the Mercedes making contact with the barrier and the stewards issuing Max a five-second penalty.

“Max drove like a lion for the rest of the race and tried everything he could to pass Lewis. We had a better tire strategy and there was only really one lap where he got close to making a move into the chicane.

“Finishing second on the road, but with the top four so close, finishing fourth is tough for Max after a drive like that but as always, he didn’t give up until the chequered flag.”


Replies (10)

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  • Biggs7

    Posts: 38

    I am not sure why is Honer always so very arrogant he probably get this from Marko

    • + 0
    • May 29 2019 - 23:12
    • cricho

      Posts: 77

      Its because he has an oversized redbull can stuck up his arse!

      • + 0
      • May 30 2019 - 04:07
    • Dert38

      Posts: 63

      He's trying to return Ricciardo

      • + 0
      • May 30 2019 - 19:49
  • Biggs7

    Posts: 38

    "The mechanics did a great job with the pit stop and Max left the box before Bottas which, as per the rules, is fine.

    • + 0
    • May 29 2019 - 23:13
  • Max has been by far the most impressive this year. He is starting to seem like a proper driver ready to fight for championships. In previous years it was very peaky performances, riddled with errors. This year, he seems both polished, but still really fast. He's also learn to shut up and let the driving to the talking. Good for him. He is a big star in the sport.

    • + 0
    • May 30 2019 - 03:45
    • Agreed, Verstappen has improved significantly. As for Red Bull, they are closing in on Ferrari slowly and steadily. While I have professed my longterm high faith in Honda, I was kinda expecting them to fall back, and I am impressed by how well RBH (and STR) is doing. If this continues, we could very well have another 2016 season ahead of us, where Red Bull manages to overthrow Ferrari by development pace and strategy.

      • + 0
      • May 30 2019 - 09:06
  • cricho

    Posts: 77

    Max is a great driver.. Amazing talent no doubt. Still think he is a bit over rated.
    Still see Sainz jr has a little edge over verstapen raw talent wize.. Sainz jr is a very under rated driver. They both have it in their blood
    .Max has the better machine right now though Im sure Sainz jr will surprise many in his maclaren
    Oh by the way HAM, VET, RIC, LEC are also better drivers han max....

    • + 0
    • May 30 2019 - 04:23
    • Uhm, they were both at STR, and that's why I don't believe Sainz has a little edge over Verstappen but the other way around. I do believe Sainz is one of the top 5 drivers at the moment. He is doing a great job at McLaren!

      • + 0
      • May 31 2019 - 12:42
    • I think you're correct. But good luck with that on a Dutch site overrun with VER fanbois.

      • + 0
      • May 31 2019 - 22:56
  • Dert38

    Posts: 63

    Pierre, Max is faster than you

    • + 0
    • May 30 2019 - 19:47


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