The culmination of the Turkish GP weekend begins the countdown to the end of the season. With only six races left, among which three comprise a triple-header; it’s going to be a fast and hard race to the end. However, in Turkey, the Mercedes machines were flying on the track. With immense speed in the Silver Arrows, Mika Hakkinen issues a warning for Max Verstappen and Red Bull.
In penning his thoughts about the race in Istanbul, Hakkinen shared his impressions on the Mercedes engine. In a nuanced manner, he warns Red Bull that they need to up their game. “What is also clear from the weekend is that the Mercedes car has moved ahead of the Red Bull in terms of performance.”
The Finn further added, “Lewis and Valtteri were quickest in qualifying, and Max is admitting that Red Bull have some work to do if they are to win this World Championship.”
Although Verstappen is six points ahead of Lewis, with the way the championship is going, that lead could fade over a race. The pace in the Mercedes was extremely impressive over the Turkish GP weekend, where Red Bull showed no improvements despite their upgrades.
Max Verstappen is up for a challenging 6 rounds
While Max Verstappen had made his concerns known after the race, Christian Horner is also worried about the newfound pace in the Mercedes machines. Horner had shared his concerns after the Turkish GP. “Their straight-line speed has taken a significant step recently, and I think that whereas we could match them with smaller wings previously, now we can’t get near.”
Formula One F1 – Turkish Grand Prix – Intercity Istanbul Park, Istanbul, Turkey – October 10, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in action during the race REUTERS/Murad Sezer
The constructor’s championship is also on the line for the Milton-Keynes team. 36 points adrift of Mercedes, Red Bull still has a fighting chance; only if they improve. Horner mentioned, “We’ve got to maximize our package as best we can and, as I say, it’s surprising that they’ve made the step that they have with the power unit.”
Drivers’ Championship lead 𝗿𝗲𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗲𝗱 pic.twitter.com/1rLpDys1af
— Red Bull Racing Honda (@redbullracing) October 10, 2021
With the race at COTA coming up Horner acknowledges that Red Bull has to give it their all. “We’ve got some tracks coming up that hopefully suit us, but we know Austin is Hamilton territory, so we’re going to have to be on our A-game.”
Have out qualified and outraced Red Bull, Mercedes has a boost going into the last six rounds of the battle. However, with Verstappen behind the Red Bull wheel, it shouldn’t be too difficult pushing the Bull through to the title in Abu Dhabi. To do so comfortably, it’s going to be a busy few weeks in Milton Keynes.
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