Red Bull Racing had a fantastic qualifying session for Sunday’s United States Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas on Saturday.
Daniel Ricciardo who goes into the race in third place in the championship will start Sunday’s race from third place on the grid behind pole sitter Lewis Hamilton and championship leader Nico Rosberg.
Ricciardo set a fastest time of 01:35.509s and speaking following the session, the Australian commented by saying:
I’m happy with qualifying for sure. It was pretty much the best we could do today, good progression and we got quicker and quicker. We start on the supersofts and the guys around me are on softs so I hope that works out well for me. We suspected that would be the case and I was happy to do it, hopefully it gives me a little bit off the start and we can challenge the first lap. The supersofts probably won’t have as much range as the softs so you want to try and get at least a handful of laps out of them, but ideally it puts me in a better position off the start and hopefully I can dictate my own pace as opposed to fighting in traffic.
Max Verstappen goes into the race on Sunday in fifth place in the championship on 165 points equal with Sebastian Vettel. Verstappen starts the race from fourth place alongside Daniel Ricciardo.
Verstappen set a fastest time of 01:35.747s and speaking following the session he commented by saying:
Being both on the second row is not a bad result at all. For me the qualifying started off well but didn’t end great. I was happy to qualify in Q2 on the soft and that was a good lap, from there on it was quite difficult. The first run in Q3 was ok, I was just building up, and then the second run went well until the last corner where I lost some time due to over steer. I have three cars in front of me so there will need to be some passing during the race and hopefully starting on the soft compound will help. Mercedes have shown in qualifying that they are pretty strong and will be hard to beat. Our focus needs to be on what comes from behind us. Daniel and I starting on different strategies means we have options to attack or defend so I hope it is an exciting race.
Red Bull head into the race in second place in the championship, 50 points ahead of Ferrari in the fight for second place in the championship. Speaking following the session, Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner commented by saying:
A strong qualifying by both of our drivers to line up third and fourth on the grid. We adopted a different strategy for the drivers in Q2 with Daniel on the supersoft tyres and Max on the softs, which was not only the drivers’ preference but also from the team perspective it gives us different options for race strategy. We know Mercedes are always very strong on a Saturday but we had encouraging race pace yesterday and hopefully we can use that to good effect in the Grand Prix tomorrow.