Verstappen ended the day in fifth place as Ferrari led a 1-2, Charles Leclerc ahead of Carlos Sainz.

The Dutchman had set the fastest first sector of anyone but was forced to slow down after Nikita Mazepin beached his Haas at Turn 11, causing the second red flag of the session.

It was a disrupted session for Verstappen as his first run on the medium tyre was affected by Lewis Hamilton’s stoppage early on. 

“It was really enjoyable to see all of them in orange and having fun in the grandstands, and of course the track as well,” Verstappen said. “It’s quite a short lap, but a lot of fast corners as well. It was a fun day.

“I don’t think it looks very representative from our side in the short run, because already after one lap, the tyres do drop off a bit. Nevertheless, we’ll all work on a few things, we’re not entirely happy in the short run. But the long run looks competitive. So, of course, that is always very important. But we also know that the starting position around here is very important, so yeah, we’ll have a look at what we can do in the short run to make it better.”

Verstappen believes had it not been for the red flag, he would have been top of the timesheets.

“Yes, there are just a few things we need to understand better, to get a bit more pace out of it,” Verstappen added. “But like I said, it’s also not very representative, because my lap was on a used set, and the lap I had to abort I think would have been good enough for first.

“So, then you talk already a bit differently. So, it’s never perfect. So, we’ll always try to look into details what we can do better.”