Verstappen: Mercedes still ahead on traditional tracks

The Red Bull driver is delighted to be leading on points but, true to his realistic nature, refuses to get excited about it.

 

Published on 03/06/2021 à 15:58

Julien BILLIOTTE

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Verstappen: Mercedes still ahead on traditional tracks

The Dutchman took control of the championship brilliantly in Monaco / © DPPI

Arriving in Azerbaijan as the leader of the Drivers ranking for the first time in his career, Max Verstappen was not the type to talk about his new status this Thursday in Baku. 

Author of a masterful victory in Monaco, the driver Red Bull, who has never ranked higher than 2nd place in 2021, however affirms that Mercedes maintains the advantage over traditional routes. 

« I think they are still ahead of us on the more classic tracks but it is also true that we are having our best start to the season, said Verstappen this Thursday from Baku, whose track is atypical to say the least and where he has never been on the podium... like in Monaco two weeks before.

We must continue this dynamic, continue to improve constantly and make changes to the car. So we will have a good card to play in the championship. It's great to be at the top of both championships but what matters is to be in the same position on the evening of Abu Dhabi ». 

  • Refusal of psychological warfare 

After his convincing success in the Principality, Verstappen declared that “ actions speak louder than words », which some interpreted as a spicy response to the comments made by his rival Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) at the start of the Monaco weekend. 

The Mercedes driver had in fact declared that Verstappen had “ probably something to prove » referring to the Dutchman's authoritarian overtaking maneuvers. The latter refutes any desire to venture into the field of psychological warfare. 

« I honestly don't care, swept away the current championship leader. Lewis said after the race that he didn't want to play that either. You have to concentrate on the track, period. 

Emotions sometimes come out in the heat of the moment or at a press conference. It also depends on the way the questions are asked. There is complete and mutual respect between Lewis and I. ». 

We will obviously talk about it again if – when? – the two leaders of the field come to blows one day on the track. 

Julien BILLIOTTE

AUTOhebdo deputy editor-in-chief. The feather dipped in gall.

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