Red Bull Formula 1 boss Christian Horner was pleased his side got "the absolute maximum" out of its weekend on its way to beating Ferrari in the Spanish Grand Prix.

The Milton Keynes squad followed up on a strong race performance in Baku to beat Ferrari to the final spot on the podium behind the dominant Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas.

Max Verstappen swept past Sebastian Vettel on the opening lap and comfortably kept the Ferrari at bay throughout to secure Red Bull’s second podium finish of the season as he moved back up to third place in the championship.

Asked if he feels Red Bull is now the second fastest team behind Mercedes, Horner replied: “I think we certainly were this weekend.

“We got the absolute maximum out of the car. Max’s first lap was outstanding. We had an aggressive strategy but we had the pace obviously to beat the Ferraris.

“Considering where we were at the pre-season tests eight or nine weeks ago, to have closed that gap and put that performance on the car, is really encouraging and obviously now we have to try and focus on diminishing the gap further to Mercedes.”

Horner said he has been encouraged by the progress Red Bull has made since the opening round in Melbourne.

“Obviously there’s quite a lot of different things on the car,” he explained. “We finished fourth in every other race and we’ve been close to the podium in the other grands prix.

“Certainly in Baku we had the pace, and in Bahrain there was a little bit of luck involved there and then unlucky with the Safety Car at that point.

“But five races in, our second podium with Honda, that’s another real positive. The performance is coming, this engine is performing well, it’s performing well in the races, and hopefully there’s more to come in coming races.”

And Horner feels Verstappen continues to go from strength to strength following another “remarkable” drive.

“I think really [he’s stepped up] in the last 12 months since Monaco last year, he’s selected another gear,” Horner said.

“His performance has been phenomenal and he has extracted every ounce of performance out of the car. He races so strongly.

“It was a really intelligent first couple of corners and then a very brave pass on Sebastian around the outside of Turn 3. I think he’s really showing his maturity and composure in the car. He was trading a tenth on every lap and that’s been remarkable.”

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