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F1 | Azerbaijan GP | Red Bull drivers are confident they will challenge Ferrari this weekend

After finishing behind Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari in FP2, neither Perez nor Verstappen seemed worried. Red Bull drivers believe they will be challenge the Italian team throughout the rest of the weekend.

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F1 | Azerbaijan GP | Red Bull drivers are confident they will challenge Ferrari this weekend
Fuente imagen: twitter.com/@redbullracing

Despite ending the second Free Practice session quarter of a second behind Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari neither Max Verstappen nor Sergio Perez looked overly concerned. Both Red Bull drivers are confident the team will manage to challenge the Maranello-based team throughout the rest of the weekend.

With a newly signed contract extension, the Mexican Sergio Perez was the quickest in FP1, before Leclerc responded in FP2, posting a time of 1m 43.224s, 0.248s faster than Perez, with Verstappen 0.356s off the pace.

It was a good start to the day,” said Perez afterwards. “P2 didn’t feel as good as we would have liked. We probably took some wrong directions with it, but we were just exploring and it was not coming, and we were not able to sort out our problems.

“But we have the data, with both tyres as well in the long run; we diverged with Max in that regard [Verstappen carrying out his FP2 long run on the softs as Perez did his on the mediums], so I think there is good data for us to gather and to go through tonight, and hopefully we’re able to put it all together.”

During the first two sessions of the weekend, numerous drivers have been suffering from purpousing. Asked if Red Bull were also affected by it, Perez replied: “Yes we are, especially in the braking, it can get very tricky to brake with those bumps.”

Verstappen finished third across both FP1 and FP2. Moreover, he complained about yellow flags compromising fast laps in both sessions – the latter caused by his own teammate running off track at Turn 15.

The Dutchman seemed totally unconcerned, as he believes Red Bull will challenge Ferrari on Saturday and Sunday.

“I was just a bit unlucky with my soft tyre runs – in FP1 and FP2 all the time, I caught yellow flags so I had to back out,” said current championship leader Max Verstappen.

“But overall, we look quite decent. Looks like Ferrari are quite quick over one lap gain. Long runs then look a little bit more even, so that’s positive… But overall, not a bad day, just need to fine-tune a few things.”

Max Verstappen steps into the weekend with nine points more than Charles Leclerc – whose debacle in Monaco costed him the lead - and 15 ahead of Perez, who will be on the lookout for his first podium in Baku.

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