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Norris Puts Verstappen Under Intense Pressure

Horner: Verstappen Faced Enormous Pressure from Norris

19/05/2024

Max Verstappen faced immense pressure from Lando Norris in a gripping race, with Red Bull’s hard tire strategy faltering in the closing laps.

Christian Horner, Red Bull team principal, can celebrate another victory for Max Verstappen and his team, but as the season progresses, it’s becoming increasingly challenging for the world champions.

“Max Verstappen was under enormous pressure in the final laps. With three track limit warnings, he couldn’t afford to make even a millimeter mistake under all that pressure. Max did an excellent job.”

“Lando was closing in fast towards the end of the race. It was a race of two halves for us. The first half was very strong, and we built a 7.5-second lead.”

“In the second half of the final stint, Lando started catching up very quickly. You have two guys at the top of their game, like Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk. It was literally sector by sector, a fantastic battle at the end of the race between Max and Lando.”

What happened in the final stint?

“Maybe we focused too much on the mediums. We took a big lead, but midway through the hard tire stint, we started losing temperature in the tire.”

“I think McLaren worked a bit more with the hard tires, and they saw the benefits in the second half of that stint.”

Horner Observes: “You Can See the Cars Converging. With the Latest Upgrades, They’re All Becoming Very Similar.”

“Ferrari is also converging with us in terms of concept, which always happens when you have stable regulations. It’s nothing we didn’t expect. On this circuit, McLaren was very fast, and so was Ferrari.”

On Friday, the weekend seemed off to a bad start in terms of setup. Horner pays deserved tribute to the unsung heroes, those who stayed back in Milton Keynes. For Imola, it was Sébastien Buemi on the simulator.

“A special mention to Sébastien Buemi, Jake Dennis, and everyone in Milton Keynes for their work until the early hours on the simulator to get the car where we needed it. We saw the results in Q3 and the race!”

“From Free Practice 1, Buemi did about 10 to 11 hours of simulation in Milton Keynes. The simulator driver role is shared with Jake Dennis, but this time it was Buemi. These unsung heroes in the team work in the darkness of Milton Keynes, and on days like today, they play a key and crucial role.”

“A driver like Buemi or Dennis has the ability and experience to adapt their driving style to say, ‘Max will like this’ or ‘Checo won’t like that.’ They’re not just there to set fast laps or adjust the car around themselves. They work to provide the best possible car for the drivers.”

The downside remains the performance of Sergio Pérez, who didn’t get past Q2 and scored only 4 points.

“It was a shame for Checo to be so out of balance with his RB20 after qualifying.”

“We applied the opposite strategy for him. He got 8th place, and 7th place was theoretically the best we could see before the race according to our analysis. We need him to support Max, in the same way that both Ferraris and both McLarens are together.”

“He had a much better start to the year, except for this weekend, which is an anomaly. He has been very strong. He’s more relaxed, less focused on what Max is doing, and more focused on himself. He has responded to that.”

Norris Puts Verstappen Under Intense Pressure

Norris Puts Verstappen Under Intense Pressure Norris Puts Verstappen Under Intense Pressure

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