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Horner says young drivers battles 'great for F1'

  • Published on 23 Jul 2019 12:14
  • comments 2
  • By: Coilin Higgins

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has praised the sport's younger drivers, commenting that their recent battles up and down the grid has been great for the sport.

His comments come after tense battles between Red Bull driver Max Verstappen and Ferrari's Charles Leclerc for the lead and victory in Austria and more recently for third place at the last race in Silverstone.

Other young drivers have also impressed so far, such as McLaren's Lando Norris going wheel-to-wheel with far more experienced drivers Lewis Hamilton and Daniel Ricciardo in Austria and Britain on the opening lap.

Williams' George Russell has also enjoyed close battles lately, going wheel-to-wheel against teammate Robert Kubica during the French Grand Prix, despite the pair only dueling for last position.

"It's great for F1," Horner said to BBC Sport. "You can never stop time and it's clear to see some great talent emerging in Formula 1 at the moment - with Max having established himself, Leclerc is doing a great job.

"Lando Norris has done a good job in a McLaren this year. I'm sure George Russell is right there but the equipment [at Williams] doesn't allow him to show that."

Both Leclerc and Verstappen have not been afraid to get involved in the action so far this season. Both drivers are only 21 years of age and while Verstappen took win number six of his F1 career in Austria, Leclerc is still searching for his first victory in what is only his second season of F1.

"F1 can be excited about the potential of those guys. But it's also great to see the young guns go up against the established guys as well - the Hamiltons and the Vettels," Horner added. 

"We have a great period in time where you just hope equipment allows those guys to race hard and competitively with each other."

Horner also spoke about Toro Rosso driver Alex Albon, who is also a rookie in his first year in F1. Albon also has been a star of the season so far, his best moment so far being a storming drive to tenth from starting in the pitlane at the Chinese Grand Prix after a crash in FP3. 

"He's raw and he needs time. But he's genuinely doing a pretty decent job in his rookie season," Horner commented.

Replies (2)

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  • I'd like it if Perez got a promotion so that we could see Russell in that RP. I'd be really curious to see where that'd land him.

    • + 0
    • Jul 23 2019 - 23:19
  • Don't always like what Horner and Marko have to say - poisonous at times but here he is 100% spot on - the kids are rocking it and has off to them. Someone once said - if you're good enough you're old enough - how true. Hats off to the teams for picking these kids ahead of established journeymen, bravo !

    • + 1
    • Jul 24 2019 - 00:05
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Date
Grand Prix
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Spain
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Spain
15 - Mar 17
Australia
29 - Mar 31
Bahrain
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Bahrain
12 - Apr 14
China
26 - Apr 28
Azerbaijan
10 - May 12
Spain
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Spain
23 - May 26
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7 - Jun 9
Canada
21 - Jun 23
France
28 - Jun 30
Austria
12 - Jul 14
United Kingdom
26 - Jul 28
Germany
2 - Aug 4
Hungary
30 - Sep 1
Belgium
6 - Sep 8
Italy
20 - Sep 22
Singapore
27 - Sep 29
Russian
11 - Oct 13
Japan
25 - Oct 27
Mexico
1 - Nov 3
United States of America
15 - Nov 17
Brazil
29 - Dec 1
United Arab Emirates
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Formula 1 Calendar - 2019

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
15 - Mar 17
Australia Albert Park
29 - Mar 31
12 - Apr 14
26 - Apr 28
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
10 - May 12
23 - May 26
Monaco Monte Carlo
7 - Jun 9
21 - Jun 23
France Paul Ricard
28 - Jun 30
Austria Red Bull Ring
12 - Jul 14
United Kingdom Silverstone
26 - Jul 28
Germany Hockenheimring
2 - Aug 4
Hungary Hungaroring
30 - Sep 1
6 - Sep 8
Italy Monza
20 - Sep 22
27 - Sep 29
Russian Sochi Autodrom
11 - Oct 13
25 - Oct 27
1 - Nov 3
United States of America Circuit of the Americas
15 - Nov 17
Brazil Interlagos
29 - Dec 1
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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