Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner was more than happy to see an entertaining battle between his team and Scuderia Ferrari during Sunday’s British Grand Prix.
The first part of the event saw Max Verstappen going wheel to wheel with Charles Leclerc, even through the pit lane when the Dutchman leapfrogged the Monegasque thanks to some swift pit work from the Milton Keynes-based squad.
However, it was all to no avail as a mistake on the out lap allowed the Ferrari driver back in front.
“It was a really exciting first part of the race, with Max going wheel to wheel with Leclerc resulting in some great racing between the two of them,” Horner said happily.
“An early pit stop put Max just ahead but unfortunately he couldn’t hold on to that position on the out lap. They were then fighting for the rest of the stint before the Safety Car was deployed.
“We took the opportunity to pit Max again so he could go to the end of the race and it then became a straight fight between Max and Sebastian, knowing he was within a pit stop of Bottas.”
Following the Safety Car, Verstappen fended off Leclerc before going into combat with Sebastian Vettel. Sixteen laps remaining saw the Dutchman alongside the German into Stowe and looked to have completed the move successfully.
Unfortunately, Vettel came back and ran into the rear of the Red Bull at Vale corner and sent the pair into the gravel and ruining each other’s races.
Horner felt the frustration for Verstappen, as he thought there was “potential for a podium”, given the twenty-one year old’s pace.
“Max managed to make a pass on the outside at Stowe but Seb misjudged his breaking and took Max’s car out from behind,” Horner added.
“Despite the enormous hit, Max was able to get going again from the gravel to bring the car home. It was a frustrating race for him as there was potential for a podium today.”
Verstappen’s team-mate Pierre Gasly had the best race of his season. The Frenchman qualified sixth on the grid and remained in touch with the Red Bull-Ferrari squabble and capitalised on the collision later on to bring his RB15 home in a fine fourth position.
“Pierre’s race was the continuation of a very strong weekend, running hard with the Ferraris and doing a very long stint on the hard tyre to get to the end of the race to achieve his best finish of the year,” Horner satisfyingly said.
“This has been a great confidence builder for him and hopefully he can use this to get some momentum going for his next race.”
The Silverstone result leaves Red Bull fifty-two points behind second place Ferrari, whilst Max Verstappen remains the best non-Mercedes AMG Motorsport driver in the Drivers’ Championship in third, thirteen points ahead of fourth place Sebastian Vettel.
Pierre Gasly’s points from the British Grand Prix increases his tally to fifty-five in a distant sixth position, sixty-five behind Charles Leclerc in fifth.