Verstappen wants to go one better this year in Austria

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Max Verstappen picked up second place in last year's Austrian Grand Prix. Unsurprisingly, this time around he wants to go one better.

The last time Formula 1 was at the Red Bull Ring, Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg clashed while fighting for the lead. That allowed Verstappen to take second at the chequered flag.

This year Verstappen is under even greater pressure to do at least as well in Spielberg. In addition to being Red Bull's home race, Verstappen needs to respond to his team mate Daniel Ricciardo's dramatic victory last time out in Baku.

“I had a really good result in Austria last year coming second," said Verstappen.

"This year we have to make sure the car is working well in the corners in order to be up with the front runners," he continued. "And then just try and be as competitive as possible on the straights.

"It’s always a bit of a compromise.

"[Last year] it was a bit unknown how the tyres would play out, so I just tried to feel my way in and keep life in them," he recalled.

"This allowed me to complete a one stop strategy, which was always going to be a gamble," he added. "But in the end worked out really well."

This year Verstappen is gambling on taking nine sets of ultrasoft tyres to Austria, with just two sets each of the supersoft and the soft compound. His team mate is taking the same allocation. Force India and McLaren are going even more aggressive, with ten sets of ultrasofts for their drivers.

Verstappen has been growing increasingly frustrated this season after a number of technical retirements. He failed to last the distance in Bahrain, Spain, Canada and Baku. In the eight races so far in 2017 he has finished on the podium only once, in China.

One thing that Verstappen knows he can count on for a boost next weekend is strong fan support. As well as being Red Bull's home circuit, it's also one of the closest Grand Prix races to be held to his own native Netherlands.

"The fans at the Red Bull Ring are always extremely passionate," he agreed. "And of course there was a big Dutch turn out last year which is always special for me to see.

"[There are] plenty of caravans and orange around the area," he said. "I already tried my hand at caravanning at the track earlier this year, that was such good fun to be able to tow a caravan in an Aston Martin and drift it!"

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