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F1 British GP: Another podium as Verstappen takes fight to Mercedes

Max Verstappen: I got past Nico round the outside. The car had a lot of grip, so you can make that move...
Max Verstappen is celebrating his second podium in as many races after a fighting drive to third position in the British Grand Prix.

The Dutchman held his third place starting position early on as he hounded Nico Rosberg for second place, Verstappen eventually prevailing with a daring pass around the outside of Becketts ahead of the switch to slick tyres.

Holding firm until lap 38 when Rosberg eventually penetrated his robust defence to reclaim second place at Stowe, Verstappen would nonetheless ease home in third position - just 1.3secs behind the Mercedes - to add to his 2016 podium tally.

“I think in general on the intermediates we had good pace, but at the beginning I was struggling with visibility because of the spray, especially in the first sector. I could not really keep up because I could not see where I was going,” said Verstappen, who was provisionally third.

“But once that cleared a bit, I could push and, yeah, I got passed Nico round the outside. The car had a lot of grip, so you can make that move and from there on the pace was good.

“But you don't want to switch too early on the slick tyre and then I had one guy in front of me, I got blue flags, but I could clearly see the slick tyre was faster now and I pitted maybe one lap too late, but you take it a bit safe.

“From there on the pace was pretty good. Lewis [Hamilton] was not pulling away too much, but Nico was pushing hard and giving me a hard time. We had some good fights into Stowe. At one point I was struggling a little bit on the straights but he pulled off a great move round the outside and from there on I was just doing my own race. I had no pressure from behind. It was a very big gap.

“Then I heard Nico had a problem and I tried to get passed and tried to close the gap, but once you get in the dirty air it is very difficult to get even closer on this track. But I think in general we can be happy.

“We finished only eight seconds behind or something. I think in general the car was working really well the whole weekend and I have to say thank-you to the team for giving me such a great car.”

Asked if it is now starting to feel 'normal' to be on the rostrum, the 18-year-old replied: “I haven't really thought about that. I just try to do the best I can every race and now it is again on the podium.

“That is two races in a row and I think that is very good and hopefully we can keep going like this and close the gap to Mercedes. I think that is our main target and first of all we still have to overtake Ferrari as well in the Constructors' Championship. So that is our first target, to overtake them, and then close the gap…”

by Rob Wilkins



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
10.07.2016 - Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
10.07.2016 - Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
10.07.2016 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
10.07.2016 - Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
10.07.2016 - Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
Max Verstappen - Red Bull Racing

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