Verstappen banking on mid-season assault on front-runners


Max Verstappen believes Red Bull Racing will be in a position to beat Mercedes and Ferrari on its merit by the middle of the 2019 season.

The Milton Keynes-based outfit cast a positive outlook on its year through the voice of both team principal boss Christian Horner and Red Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko.

However, the first three races of 2019 proved that the outfit's RB15 performs at a deficit relative to its rivals, despite Honda delivering on all its promises.

Relentless development and future upgrades, and additional progress from Honda, should ensure that Red Bull is on a par with Mercedes and Ferrari in the near future.

"I think we still need to add more horsepower, but we are a little bit closer. On the car side we also need to improve to really compete," said the Dutchman in an exclusive interview with

"Hopefully halfway through the season we won’t have to say we can only fight on circuits without straights.

"We are still losing time on the straights, that’s a fact. Especially compared to Ferrari. They found something this year but nobody knows how.

"They have done their homework and we have to make sure we get closer with the chassis and the engine.

"On the car side we also need to improve to really compete. We'll see."


Verstappen collected a podium in Melbourne which was followed by a couple of fourth-place finishes in Bahrain and Shanghai, a track record that satisfies the 21-year-old who isn't giving up on his title chances.

"I think no one expected we would compete for wins right away - I don’t think that’s realistic," he said. "With a new engine partner it takes some time.

"I am very pleased with Honda so far. The engine is very reliable. Power could always be better, but we knew that. They’re working really hard on it. We can’t complain.

"It’s still very early in the season and we are third in the championship. Everything is still possible.

"We need to make sure we get good updates on the car and the engine and then anything is still possible."

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