Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Nurburgring, 2020

Red Bull ‘definitely made a good step’ says Verstappen after strongest qualifying pace yet

2020 Eifel Grand Prix

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Max Verstappen says Red Bull have made a clear improvement with their car after the team lapped closer to Mercedes than they have all year at the Nurburgring.

Having been quickest at the start of Q3, Verstappen slipped to third place behind the Mercedes at the end. However his 0.256 second gap to the quickest Mercedes is the closest Red Bull have been so far this season.

Despite this improvement, Verstappen wasn’t completely happy with his car’s balance in qualifying, saying he had too much understeer.

“Overall today’s been pretty OK,” he said. “The car’s been handling quite well, Quali as well I felt quite comfortable.

“There were a few little balance thing I would like to improve but of course you have short notice. But overall it was a good qualifying. I just struggled a bit with understeer.

“I don’t like understeer, but this track at the moment when it’s so cold with the tyres it just didn’t come towards throughout qualifying. In the beginning it was fine and then it just slipped away a bit.

“When you’re understeering you can’t carry that mid-corner speed through the corners, you have to freestyle it a bit more and you lose a bit of time. But still a good qualifying to be that close to them.”

The car’s improvement has mainly come from new parts Red Bull have introduced, said Verstappen.

“The engine is the same,” he said. “We brought a few upgrades so the car is working a bit better. Of course with only having run today there is still la lot of things to go through and analyse and optimise because of the understeer I can in the car.

“But it’s definitely a good step forward so we are in the right way so I just hope we can keep heading into that direction and keep improving.”

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2020 Eifel Grand Prix

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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7 comments on “Red Bull ‘definitely made a good step’ says Verstappen after strongest qualifying pace yet”

  1. Good to see the progress the Redbulls are making, this will be good for the sport. I just hope they don’t leave their #2 drivers out in the cold.

    1. Albon did also much better so i think we get tomorrow some race to watch.

  2. I think the gap to Mercedes is still there it’s just Verstappen being able to adapt quickly. We’ve seen in the past that Hamilton takes a long time to get up to speed over a weekend

    1. Exactly me feeling too. The Merc has more potential than both drivers showed today.
      But i hope that we are wrong and RBR is actually closing the gap.

    2. Well…IF you’re correct…maybe the “other” drivers should take their time getting up to speed? I mean.. it seems to work for Lewis. 😁

      1. If the speed is not there ( in the car) there is nothing to get up to ;)

    3. I believe it’s more due to the new engine modes regulations still.
      Average gap to the nearest non Mercedes-powered competitor before it: 0.908 s
      Average gap to the nearest non Mercedes-powered competitor after: 0.507 s

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