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Horner The Racing Machine Verstappen Won Two Races

Horner: The ‘Racing Machine’ Verstappen ‘Won Two Races’ on Sunday

20/05/2024

Christian Horner, Red Bull’s Team Principal, lauded Max Verstappen’s dual victories at Imola and in virtual racing, showcasing his extraordinary skill and dedication.

Horner openly expressed his admiration for Max Verstappen’s performance this weekend at Imola. The Briton was impressed to see his driver secure pole position and win the race, while also competing for five hours in the virtual 24 Hours of Nürburgring on iRacing with his Team Redline.

“He’s essentially a racing machine. It’s not uncommon for him to test different setups in the evening, so this isn’t unusual for him,” Horner said. “He won two races. One in a BMW M3 and the other in a Formula 1 car. You heard what it meant to him. He went for pole and delivered a masterclass in the race.”

Horner acknowledged, however, that the end of the race was far more stressful than anticipated, with unexpected pressure from Lando Norris. Fortunately for the Dutchman, he managed to maintain a slight margin in the final laps to avoid conceding DRS to the McLaren.

“In the first stint on the medium tyre, we felt we had everything under control. After switching to the hard tyre, the first half of the stint went very well, but we started to lose tyre temperature, impacting performance.”

“What made the situation particularly stressful at the end of the race was that Max had already made three track limit errors and couldn’t afford another.”

“Max couldn’t afford to make a single mistake with track limits. He performed brilliantly and, despite the significant pressure, managed to keep Lando just outside DRS range.”

Horner revealed on Sunday that Sébastien Buemi spent 11 hours in the simulator from Friday night to Saturday to address issues encountered during practice, with successful results, and praised the team’s overall effort.

“We worked extensively on the setups Friday night and Saturday, managing to rebalance the car and place it in a better window. It was a big leap. This is where you can never underestimate the support of the team back at the factory, the simulator drivers, and giving credit where it’s due.”

“The essence of the team is the ability to react when things aren’t going well, and we managed to turn the situation around. Given Friday’s result, all our analyses said it wasn’t possible. But we managed to turn things around and win the race.”

The team principal revealed that Red Bull initially feared Charles Leclerc before seeing Norris mount a significant challenge: “After 40 laps, our eyes were on Leclerc, wondering if he would make a move and pose a challenge.”

“But Lando, whatever window he managed to get his tyre into, suddenly brought his car to life. It shows how sensitive these cars are to different conditions.”

Horner The Racing Machine Verstappen Won Two Races on Sunday

Horner: The ‘Racing Machine’ Verstappen ‘Won Two Races’ on Sunday. Horner: The ‘Racing Machine’ Verstappen ‘Won Two Races’ on Sunday

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