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Formula 1

Verstappen chasing improvements after setup changes 'didn't work'

Max Verstappen has revealed that setup changes between practice sessions in Saudi Arabia on Friday didn't help him find the balance he desired.

Verstappen Saudi
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To news overview © Rn365/Michael Potts

Red Bull's Max Verstappen has said that he's chasing the setup of his RB16B, after changes he made between the first and second practice sessions on Friday sent him in the wrong direction.

While Verstappen finished the afternoon first practice session in second, and half-a-tenth down on Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton, he slipped to fourth place and two-tenths away in the evening.

Verstappen's time came on the Soft tyre, albeit with his third flying lap, while pace-setter Hamilton used the Medium.

"Overall, it's a really cool track, there are a lot of fast corners and it's fun to drive," Verstappen told media after Friday's track action.

"We struggled to get heat into the tyres in FP2, which we will of course look into. Then we made a few changes from FP1 to FP2 which didn't quite work but, hopefully, we can find the right balance come qualifying tomorrow.

"There are a lot of things to work on and improve so we'll see what we can do to get more pace out of the car overnight.

"Looking ahead to qualifying, I think it might be quite difficult with the traffic but, in general, it's hard to tell how Saturday is going to go, as anything can happen, but we'll push hard and give it everything."

Horner: This is Max's type of circuit

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said that Verstappen won't be holding anything back this weekend, as the Dutchman has his first chance to wrap up the Drivers' Championship.

Should Verstappen outscore Hamilton by 18 points or more, he will win his maiden title this weekend.

"You've just got to go for it," Horner told Sky Sports.

"He's worked incredibly hard, as have the whole team, to get into this position to be here, two races from the end. You've just got to throw everything at it.

"And this is Max's kind of circuit - high-speed, walls, kerbs. You can see he was down to a time quicker than anybody else. I spoke to him after the session - he's certainly enjoying it!"

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F1 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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