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Verstappen Concedes to Mercedes’ Superior Pace at Canadian GP, Admits Qualifying Dead-Heat Flattered Red Bull

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Max Verstappen Acknowledges Mercedes Superiority: 'I couldn't achieve that'

Max Verstappen admits that Mercedes was beyond competition during the Canadian Grand Prix qualifiers.

Max Verstappen hinted that the tie with George Russell made Red Bull's speed at the Canadian Grand Prix seem better than it was, confessing he believed the lap times Mercedes achieved before Q3 were unattainable.

Russell and Verstappen recorded the same qualifying times, marking the first instance of a tie since the 1997 European Grand Prix.

The leading time posted by the Mercedes driver, achieved on used tires, continued to dominate the leaderboard even after Russell couldn't surpass it on his last attempt, even though he switched to new tires.

Reflecting on the qualifying session, Verstappen acknowledged that upon witnessing Mercedes' performance in Q2, he believed it was impossible for him to achieve something similar.

"Indeed, overall, I believe the qualifying went fairly well," he remarked. He pointed out that, as previously discussed, Q3 appeared to be Mercedes' least impressive segment. Thus, matching the lap time exactly is commendable; however, retrospectively evaluating their true speed, he's content with securing the second position.

"After observing their lap times post-Q2, I thought to myself, 'achieving something similar is beyond my capabilities.' Then, naturally, we experienced a slight drizzle intermittently, just minor sprinkles. However, reflecting on it, the weekend on our end was somewhat disorganized, plagued by numerous minor problems."

"After that point, we definitely made efforts to achieve the optimal equilibrium with the vehicle. I believe we managed to find a fairly good balance during the qualifying rounds, which pleased me. However, we must aim for smoother weekends that are free from complications. I believe doing so would make a significant difference."

Red Bull has faced difficulties in recent races, particularly on uneven tracks and when dealing with curbs, which appear to be their primary vulnerability.

Verstappen disclosed that Red Bull continues to face similar challenges in Canada.

"Indeed, we continue to face similar challenges, yet the design of this track offers some advantages over Monaco, which features a higher number of slow-speed sections, emphasizing the importance of having effective suspension and mechanical traction," he further explained.

"In this context, aerodynamics play a significant role. Naturally, there are several spots where navigating kerbs or dealing with uneven surfaces is necessary, but we're aware of these challenges and are focusing our efforts on overcoming them. That's why, overall, securing the second position here feels satisfactory."

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