The Dutch GP at Zandvoort saw Red Bull and Max Verstappen take pole position and race win with a strong performance on home soil that was nevertheless not free from pressure, as Mercedes was constantly putting the fight with the drivers' championship leader within a couple of seconds.
Red Bull’s Team Principal, Christian Horner, told his impressions after Sunday’s race at Zandvoort on how tight the championship battle is between the top teams and how the challenge for the F1 championship for the rest of 2021 looks, as reported first by Autosport.
“We’re qualifying within a tenth.”
Max Verstappen took pole position in the Netherlands by 0.038s. over Lewis Hamilton on the race that ended with the Dutchman reclaiming the lead on the driver’s championship three points ahead of the Briton.
“We seem to have a tenth, maybe two-tenths advantage in the race I would say at this venue."
“There are going to be circuits that suit Mercedes and there'll be circuits that suit us I think over the next phase of this championship.”
“So we need to make sure we grab every opportunity. Today we did that, under massive pressure but it was great to get our eighth win of the year.”
Toto Wolff also spoke on Sunday evening after the race, on the feelings Mercedes has for the rest of the championship challenge, as Max Verstappen, Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas were the only three out of the 20 drivers to finish the Dutch GP on the lead lap.
“You can see between the teams, there is just nothing in-between. The first three cars lapped everybody else, and that shows the level that is necessary to deploy in order to win these championships.”
In the end, the Mercedes Team Principal agreed with Horner, the advantage will swing between one team and the other in the championship rounds to go, and the teams: “just need to be on A-game all the time.”