Max Verstappen says he is primed for his first outing in the Red Bull RB12 at this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix as he prepares to make his much anticipated debut with the former title-winning team.
Red Bull shocked the F1 paddock by announcing Verstappen would step up from the Toro Rosso 'feeder' team into the Red Bull Racing 'A' team from round five in Spain, replacing Daniil Kvyat and joining Daniel Ricciardo.
Seen as a prelude to a probable race deal in 2017 anyway, the young Dutchman is thrilled to be given an early shot at success in a more competitive machine.
“I'm very excited for the opportunity to drive for Red Bull Racing and I can't wait to jump in the car in Barcelona. I have a lot of work to do ahead of the race, lots of data to study but luckily it's a track I know well because we have driven there so much.
Team-mate Ricciardo, meanwhile, is eager to bounce back from a tough race in Sochi and feels the Circuit de Catalunya could provide him with opportunities to contest for a podium.
“It's a relatively high down force circuit so we can strap most of the things on the car that make it go faster. It's quite hard on tyres but we are normally a bit stronger than some other teams in that area. It could provide a good opportunity for us to get close to the podium.”