Christian Horner praised the strategic work of his Red Bull Racing team after the Chinese Grand Prix after seeing Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo finish third and fourth on Sunday.
The Team Principal was delighted to see Verstappen climb from sixteenth on the grid to claim his first podium finish of the season, while Ricciardo was just behind his team-mate at the chequered flag.
Horner felt the decision to go with the Supersoft Pirelli tyre was the right way to go for them, even though those around them were taking the Soft compound, but everyone was forced to make a second stop regardless of which tyre they were using.
“A great performance by the team today, taking advantage of the slippery conditions at the beginning of the race Max was able to make a great start and had an amazing first lap to come round in seventh and from there both drivers were in great shape,” said Horner.
“The right strategic calls under the safety car allowed us then to get our cars into second and third ahead of both Ferraris. Great work from the pit crew today. Max then made a fair move on Daniel and looked strong at the point in the race. Daniel held off the Ferraris as long as he could before Sebastian [Vettel] was able to get past.
“As we’d elected to go with the Supersoft tyre for us it always going to be a two-stop race. We then picked the right moment to go on to the Supersofts and in the latter part of the race Daniel was happier with his car balance and closed down on Max and some great racing between the two of them over the last 10 laps provided an exciting finish to the grand prix.”
Horner was happy that the team could achieve their 100th podium in Formula 1 in China, although he knows that despite the positive result there is still work to be done to be truly competitive this season.
“To come away third and fourth is a very positive result, and we also achieved our 100th podium as a team,” said Horner. “Still plenty to do, but leaving China with 27 points is extremely positive.”