On Sunday, Red Bull continued to extend their lead in the 2022 championship with another double podium at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Max Verstappen finished on top, while his teammate Sergio Perez finished second as Red Bull earned maximum points in Baku, along with the fastest lap. Unfortunately, both Ferrari drivers faced a DNF within 20 laps, allowing Red Bull to finish on top as Mercedes finished third and fourth.
Max Verstappen showed some excellent driving in Baku after a big disappointment last year, which cost him a win. The reigning world champ crashed into the barriers last year due to a tyre failure while being in the lead. Unfortunately, the Dutchman was out of the race and his teammate Checo went on to win the race. As Red Bull continues to get stronger in the constructors\’ standings, the team principal, Christian Horner, described the team performance in Baku as redemption for last season.
Earlier in the weekend, Verstappen said he had unfinished business in Baku after failing to finish last year. Horner was quite pleased with how the Dutchman performed. He revealed that last year\’s disaster was in the team\’s mind during Sunday\’s race.
Moreover, the Red Bull boss said that Max drove maturely on Sunday, just like Le\’Mans style. Christian revealed that the team had given the 24-year-old lap time to drive to avoid pushing or extending the car too much. Horner believed that the way Verstappen drove was, in a way, a redemption for last year after the tyre blow-out frustrations. The Red Bull team principal added, \”That\’s also why we changed tyres with 20 laps to go or less.\”
Horner Explains The Pace Difference Between Verstappen & Perez
Sergio Perez was immaculate at the start of the race in Baku as he crossed the pole-sitter, Leclerc, at Turn 1. However, the Mexican driver struggled in the first phase on medium tyres after starting second on the grid. Meanwhile, Verstappen started third and could not get in front early in the race. But, the Dutchman came back stronger after Leclerc\’s retirement. Eventually, Max overtook Checo during the 14th lap of 51 and kept the lead until the end. The team principal Horner shared insight on why Verstappen seemed to have a better pace as compared to Perez.
The Red Bull boss described Checo\’s performance as magic. He was pleased how Perez had a great start and took the lead early from the field. However, the Red Bull drivers\’ rear tyres started graining much earlier than the cars following him. Christian felt that Red Bull might have put too much work into making Perez\’s car fit for qualifying rather than the race. Moreover, Horner pointed out that Max\’s car had a much better deg in the race. He added, \”Of course, the drivers are contributing to that as well.\”
The racing team will look to continue their winning spree at the Canadian GP as F1 moves to Montreal for the ninth race of the reason. Meanwhile, Ferrari will look to make a stronger comeback after missing out on the last few races,