Max Verstappen says he was impressed by former Red Bull Formula 1 teammate’s Pierre Gasly’s “incredible” drive to a second-place finish at the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Gasly benefitted from late mayhem in Sunday’s race at Interlagos to pip six-time world champion Lewis Hamilton to the line in second place, completing a Honda-powered 1-2 behind Red Bull’s Verstappen and claiming his first F1 podium.

The Frenchman started the year as Verstappen’s teammate but was replaced by Alexander Albon in Belgium after a difficult start to life at Red Bull, with Gasly returning to see out the rest of the season with Toro Rosso.

“It’s incredible,” Verstappen said. “Of course, he anyway already had a great race.

“That’s already a good result and then yeah, you just stay out of trouble and other people, of course, make mistakes and you profit from that.

“I think it’s great to see Pierre up here. Now it’s also the second podium for Toro Rosso already this year, so I think they are very happy with this, and like I said, I’m very happy to see Pierre up on the podium.

“I always knew he was a very quick driver. I think this year in the beginning maybe didn’t work out the way it should but, as you can see, I think Pierre is very strong and, at Toro Rosso again, he regrouped and he had already before this race a lot of good results.

“So, this is even, I think, a bigger motivation.”

Hamilton also praised Gasly’s display, particularly the skills he demonstrated when racing in wheel-to-wheel combat.

“He did a fantastic job,” Hamilton added.

“He put the car in the right place in every section of the track, was very fair and didn’t make any mistakes. So, hat off to him. He did a fantastic job.

“The Honda’s obviously made some big steps and it’s great to see another manufacturer as strong as they are now.

“It means that hopefully next year we’re going to have a serious three-way, four-way battle and that’s great for Formula 1.”

 

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