Max Verstappen is quietly optimistic Red Bull can go all the way in its fight with Mercedes at the Belgian Grand Prix after locking out the top two positions in FP2, but admits he will 'wait and see' what his rivals have to offer.
Verstappen led a Red Bull 1-2 in FP2 at Spa-Francorchamps, the Dutchman's impressive pace in the RB12 magnified by Mercedes opting to run a conservative afternoon programme for both Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton.
RESULTS: Belgian Grand Prix – Free practice results (2)
Indeed, with Hamilton already guaranteed to start towards the back of the field, Verstappen is hopeful Red Bull capitalise by challenging Rosberg this weekend, with the Spanish Grand Prix winner impressed with the early pace.
“It was a good day,” he said. “This track is not easy to set up the car with the long straights but then also the fast inner section, so I was finding my way a bit. Once I got that balance right the time was there
“For sure Mercedes will come back, they are very strong but we know it was a positive day. We will see what happens. We can definitely improve even more. We have to wait and see what they do but so far I think we have a good car and a very good starting point.
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Indeed, with a large Dutch contingent behind heightened ticket sales for this year's Belgian race, verstappen admits it is a motivation for him.
“Very happy to be first here. The fans were definitely cheering me on and showing all the Dutch flags so that gives me special motivation!”
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