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Christian Horner

Horner boosted after spotting Mercedes straight-line issues

Red Bull have the advantage heading into Sunday's Italian Grand Prix as Max Verstappen will start from pole position. Their hopes of a strong result have also been boosted after seeing Lewis Hamilton struggle to pass both McLarens on Saturday.

Hamilton Monza
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To news overview © Mercedes

Christian Horner believes that Red Bull have a strong chance of keeping Mercedes at bay in the Italian Grand Prix after seeing Lewis Hamilton struggle to find a way past Lando Norris on Saturday.

Valtteri Bottas took the win in Sprint Qualifying at Monza, while Max Verstappen extended his World Championship lead to five points after finishing second.

Hamilton, who had a poor start, could only manage a fifth-place finish after falling behind McLaren drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Norris.

Red Bull team boss Horner shared some insight as to why the Mercedes driver struggled to get past the McLaren, a development that has him optimistic heading into Sunday.

"When they're running sustainably they're harvesting a lot, what we call clipping, so at the end of the straights you see the rear light flashing and that just kills your straight-line speed," Horner told Sky Sports.

"You could see Lewis getting within half a second, which is usually an overtake, but just running out of momentum at the end of the straight.

"That's good news if we can stay ahead tomorrow, because it means they won't be able to attack too hard at the end of the straights, because they've got this harvesting going on."

Horner reckons Saturday's Sprint Qualifying was dictated by the start, as Hamilton's poor launch off the line ultimately cost him a shot at points.

"It was all dictated at the start," Horner continued. "A great start for Max and a poor one from Lewis, so we were able to capitalize on that.

"The fast-starting McLarens on the Soft tyres meant we were vulnerable to that at the start, but we were able to cover that off. We had good pace in the race and were able go with Valtteri."

Also interesting:

Video: The secrets of the historic Monza circuit

Follow Rudy van Buren as he takes you on a flying lap around the home of Italian motorsport, the historic 'Temple of Speed' at Monza.

F1 2021 Italian Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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