Christian Horner has provided the reasons behind Red Bull's decision to start Max Verstappen on the Medium tyres for the Brazil Sprint race.
Starting second and the only frontrunner on Medium tyres, the Dutchman soon passed Haas' Kevin Magnussen for the lead of the Sprint, before coming under pressure from George Russell.
He eventually lost the lead of the race to the Mercedes driver, before falling behind Ferrari's Carlos Sainz and Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton, and finishing in P4.
Speaking after the Sprint, Team Principal Horner admitted that the team had little faith in the durability of the Soft tyre.
"We felt that the Soft was a bit limited in range," conceded Horner to Sky Sports.
"So, we took the decision start on the Medium because, [if you] survived the first 12 laps, the second half of the race would become a little more comfortable.
"Having survived the first half of the race, we ended up actually in a worse degradation than the Soft.
"Mercedes have had a very quick car today, and we just couldn't hold them off."
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Horner hoping to recoup losses in Grand Prix
When asked if Red Bull's deficit came from Mercedes' car performance or tyre choice, Horner pointed towards the wave of upgrades that have been brought in by Mercedes.
"It's a combination of both. We've seen that they've been heavily developing this car through the season," added Horner.
"So, it's no real surprise that they've had this kind of performance with the amount of parts that they've been bringing and developing."
Horner continued to say that he was hoping for Red Bull to gain a tyre advantage in Sunday's Grand Prix:
"George has done a great job there, and I think the soft tyre would have been better for us today, but the advantage is we take that extra set into tomorrow's race.
"What we gave up today strategically hopefully we might get back tomorrow."
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