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max verstappen worried despite win in Spanish Grand Prix

Verstappen speaks of 'too slow' Red Bull: 'This cannot be sustained'

23 June at 16:31
  • Corwin Kunst

Race winner Max Verstappen labelled the first three laps as a key moment in Spain. The three-time world champion could start focusing on keeping Lando Norris behind him from then on. He succeeded, but it was not without a struggle. Speaking to Viaplay the World Championship leader explains what it took.

"We never had the speed that Lando and McLaren had," is Verstappen's painful conclusion. "We were not good enough on the tyres. Every time I pushed to match his [Norris] lap times, my tyres got too hot. We won, but we were not the fastest [team] here. I'm very happy to win, but you can't keep this up all season."

The 26-year-old driver knows things need to improve at Red Bull despite winning seven of 10 races this year. "Everyone still makes small mistakes now, whether it's a pit stop, strategy or start. We do that well as a team, but in terms of pure speed, we were too slow."

Worries for Verstappen

Does that worry Verstappen? "I have been worried for some time. Of course we want to be the fastest team and of course we are not that at the moment. We have to work hard to improve that, because today they were faster AND better on the tyres. Those are two very important things. We have to make the car better and make sure we control the tyres better."

In the last 18 laps, Verstappen had to defend an eight-second lead. "That was quite difficult. Every time I wanted to turn on, my tyres got too hot. I couldn't really defend well, there was no more in it either." Fortunately, it turned out to be enough, as the Dutchman had two seconds left on Norris after 66 seconds.