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Red Bull driver Max Verstappen believes the RB16 is improving to the point where the team can challenge Mercedes for victories this season. For the second successive race, Verstappen finished as runner-up, taking advantage of Valtteri Bottas’ tyre failure.
Verstappen is convinced that with continued improvements to the car, it will allow him an opportunity to fight Mercedes this season.
“We got lucky with Valtteri’s puncture,” said Verstappen. “Hopefully, we can put the pressure on, and there are still a lot of races left this year. We have to be realistic about where we are on pace at the moment, and fighting them for victories and the championship under normal circumstances is quite tricky.
“But the car is getting better, it’s more predictable, so if we can keep in touch then there is always a chance. We’ll keep pushing to close the gap and we will try not to make life easy for them.”
F1 returns to Silverstone this weekend for the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, with Verstappen hoping a different set of circumstances could have a bearing.
“We haven’t really been able to fight them for victory but we are keeping the pressure on them,” he said. “It’s still good to be on the podium and you never know for the upcoming weekend what can happen, the end of the last race was pretty crazy!
“The tyre compounds this weekend are going to be softer, the weather is going to be warmer and the strategy could be different so I’m looking forward to it. We’ve had a week at Silverstone now so everyone knows what they’re doing around the track, so let’s see if we can learn even more about the car and try to improve it further.”