Max Verstappen has suggested that Aston Martin Red Bull Racing did the most they could by achieving third in the Styrian Grand Prix on Sunday.
Verstappen took his first podium of the season and first points as he finished in third place. He ended up behind both Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team cars in Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas as Red Bull found themselves outpaced by the German team.
Verstappen spoke about his feelings on the overall performance of the team and during the race. He explained that the team were able to get the best result possible, but felt the team did not have the pace of the Mercedes.
“Today we maximised the result with the podium and it’s of course good to be back up there, but we were just too slow to really fight for the win,” said Verstappen. “I pushed as hard as I could and tried everything to stay with Lewis but it just wasn’t possible.
“We have work to do and we will keep pushing as hard as we can to improve and I know how hard everyone is working.“
Verstappen went on to explain the race was not that fun for himself, as he was in free air during a lot of the race due to Hamilton creating a gap ahead of him.
He went on the comment on the battle between him and Bottas which happened on lap sixty-six and sixty-seven as Verstappen had to defend from the Finn and was able to for a lap before Bottas eventually passed him. He conveyed how pitting earlier for the medium compound tyres affected the battle between him and the Finn.
“For me, it wasn’t the most exciting race up until I had a lap of fighting with Valtteri,” said the Dutchman. “My tyres were pretty dead at that point and I knew he was going to pass me, but I wasn’t going to make it easy and had a bit of fun re-passing him around the outside.
“I had nothing to lose as there was such a big gap behind so there was no risk.“
He made it clear that he was still happy with the result he achieved with the team, as team-mate Alexander Albon came home in fourth place. Verstappen started looking ahead to the Hungarian Grand Prix, giving his opinion that the team will be stronger because of the track suiting the Red Bull car much more than the Red Bull Ring.
“P3 is of course good points but it’s still not what we want, we want to fight for victories every weekend, so I hope Hungary is better for us,” he said.
“With less straights, we should hopefully have more chance and maybe it will be hotter than today. For now it’s time for everyone to have a few days to rest and re-set for next week.”