Max Verstappen did not expect to start Formula 1’s Hungarian Grand Prix after he crashed on his way to the grid, and labelled second place as feeling “like a victory”.

The Red Bull driver sustained damage to his front wing and suspension of his RB16 after he slid off into the Turn 12 barriers on his reconnaissance lap to the grid.

Verstappen’s mechanics were hurriedly forced to fix his car in the build-up to lights, with Red Bull boss Christian Horner revealing the crew did so with “25 seconds to go” before the five-minute warning cut-off.

But a brilliant start from seventh put Verstappen in early contention for the lead, and the Dutchman went on to claim second behind race-winner Lewis Hamilton.

"It was not how I wanted it in the beginning of course, ending up in the barriers on the laps to the grid," Verstappen said.

"But the mechanics did amazing job to fix the car. I don't know how they did it, but incredible. To pay them back with the second place, I was very pleased with that.

"The first lap was very crucial and from there on, I think we had the right calls, and we had good pace.

"We just kept doing our own thing and of course to be able to split the two Mercedes cars is good for us.”

Verstappen explained that the repaired suspension felt “like new” from the start was “working like normal”.

Verstappen had to fend off a late attack from Valtteri Bottas as the Mercedes driver recovered to the podium after botching his start.

“I was just trying to do my own pace,” he explained. “Of course I could see he was catching like a second a lap.

“But of course following here is quite tricky so as soon as he was within one-and-a-half seconds it was a bit more difficult for him.

“Then in the last lap we had also traffic in front which didn’t make it easier for me on those old tyres but we managed to hang on and very happy with second.

“I thought I was not going to race so to be second is like a victory today.”