Verstappen dominant in Saudi Arabia: 'Mercedes no longer has an advantage'

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26 November at 15:12
Last update 26 November at 17:59

The title fight between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton is not only noticeable on the track, but also beyond that, as there is a clear rivalry between Red Bull Racing and Mercedes. Helmut Marko tells Autosprint that he expects Verstappen to be dominant in Saudi Arabia, as Mercedes no longer has an advantage.

In recent weeks a lot has been said about the rear wing of the Mercedes cars. According to Christian Horner, the rear wing bends too far and therefore the British team are faster on the straights. In Qatar, the difference in speed suddenly seemed less and both teams have their own explanation for that.

According to Marko, the rear wing now bends less, but that is probably due to the many technical checks Mercedes has had. "In Qatar we saw that Hamilton's speed advantage was no longer so great, it was more or less within the normal range. This is due to the fact that Mercedes stopped using the extremely flexible rear wing after stricter FIA testing."

Red Bull Racing is confident

In Brazil, the seven-time world champion also received a new engine, but according to Marko, this will not change the outcome of the race in Saudi Arabia. The biggest change and the biggest difference was in the flexible rear wing. "Mercedes will use the rocket engine from Brazil again in Saudi Arabia. Because he can no longer bend the wing, he no longer has an advantage that was worth four tenths. We are confident in Max's strength on the street circuits. He won in Monaco and clearly dominated in Baku before crashing out due to tyre damage. I think the driver can still make the difference in Saudi Arabia."