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Formula 1 Hungarian GP

Verstappen: Hungary F1 qualifying balance issues helped race pace

Max Verstappen reckons that the imbalances he faced in qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix yielded a much stronger Red Bull car in the Formula 1 race at the Hungaroring.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19

Having missed out on pole to Lewis Hamilton by just 0.003s, Verstappen complained after the session of his RB19 being "all over the shop" and struggled with a lack of feeling at the wheel.

Verstappen's fortunes in the race were not nearly as close run, as he secured a crushing victory in Hungary over Lando Norris with a 33.7-second advantage.

Reflecting on his race, Verstappen suggested that the difficulties preparing the car for qualifying actually yielded a better baseline for the race. He added that it was not intentional to sacrifice one-lap pace.

"We tried a few different things with the car in terms of set-up and qualifying, which probably worked very well for today," Verstappen explained, in response to a question from Autosport about his conflicting emotions over the set-up.

"But, I mean, we tried so many things throughout the whole weekend and it never worked on one lap.

"So it might have also been that we just didn't make our tyre work well over one lap because, uh, you know, in the race everything heats up and it runs hotter for a long period of time.

"You need probably a very different balance for that. And basically, yesterday I was understeering a lot. Today it's warmer, both ambient and track. So probably it all came to me anyway, and that's why I probably had such a nice balance today."

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, 1st position, on the podium

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, 1st position, on the podium

Photo by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

"It was one of those days where everything is just, you can put any tyre on," he added later. "We could have put a soft on as well at the end, and it could have been fine."

Asked to review his start when he nipped past Hamilton into the first corner to assume the lead, Verstappen said that he felt the car immediately bite as soon as he released the clutch, and had no wheelspin.

He hinted at his slightly slow getaway at the British Grand Prix two weeks prior, joking that it was nice to have a good start "for once".

"It was a pretty perfect day. It already started with the actual start where we had a good launch for once, and could look after our tyres quite well.

"Every stint, we just eked out a bit more of a gap, and the car was honestly really enjoyable to drive today.

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"I think as soon as I released the clutch, it was immediately like, I felt like I had no wheel spin like I had at Silverstone.

"I got a good run. Then I knew of course I had the inside, so I knew that was going to be my corner in Turn 1, we braked quite late.

"But then I just did my thing through Turn 2 as well. And from there I could just build up the pace slowly."

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