The clouds are set to be the best partner for the current F1 season so far, being elected as the ‘spicy’ ingredient in making interesting races traditionally all but exciting. The third and last ‘ring’ the Circus will hit is certainly among them: renamed the “East Europe Monaco” with a twisty and thick snaky carriage, Budapest has been incriminated for many soporific Grand Prix back in the years; but in 2019 the other characteristic may be stay away from the Danube: scorching heat tyre-killer sun is going to stay away from Hungary capital city for Qualifying and for Sunday’s race: the good numbers of laps completed with Intermediate tyres reveal that teams worry about the wet coming.
With this set drawing the set for the weekend, Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly should be satisfied enough to hear rain drops coming on their cars: the performance has been on the verge, letting Max triumph at Hockenheim and Pierre catching up with the top-5 group of cars.
Verstappen has been clearly tasting the limit on the first day of Practice, completing a couple of spins with and without water spitting: with Helmut Marko claiming that Red Bull “will win at least five races”, three podiums are missing for reaching this personal target. And the ideal candidate for the mission is certainly the Dutch, not prone to interrupt a incredible series of placements in the last 20 races so far:
I think it was a good day for us and although Mercedes seem to be a little bit ahead we’re very close which is positive. We learnt a lot this morning during the dry running and the car was competitive straight away. We were then able to make lots of changes, some worked and some didn’t, but that is what practice sessions are for and you have to see if you can improve the balance before deciding on one direction. The car seemed to work well in both wet and dry conditions, which is very positive. Tomorrow is a new day but it all looks pretty close so it should be an interesting qualifying
On the opposite gate, if rumours of an early dropping of Gasly have been snoozed right after its ultimate clash at German Grand Prix, pressure isn’t cooling down on the Frenchman; last words of Christian Horner spoke of the chance of catching Ferrari in Constructors standings were possible “if we start double scoring. That's our target in the second half of the year, to really close that gap down”: Pierre could be the only Red Bull of the winning era of the team to not being able to claim a win:
We have a strong car and the package seems to be working well in both the dry and the wet, but we can’t take many conclusions from today with the mixed conditions. I was happy with the car in both sessions, even if we didn’t do many laps, but it’s too early to see where we stand. I don’t know what’s going to happen with the weather tomorrow but it could be really unpredictable like today with more tricky conditions. I think as expected Mercedes are really fast and we probably didn’t see Ferrari’s true pace so we’ll find out tomorrow what we can fight for, but the battle with Ferrari will be pretty tight