The Formula 1 season heads to Monaco this weekend as round five of the 2021 championship takes place on the streets of Monte-Carlo.
The glitziest race of the year, we missed the 78-lap Grand Prix last season thanks to the pandemic but this weekend we head back to the iconic principality and Red Bull team principal Christian Horner is under no illusions that his outfit needs to bite back in the fight with Mercedes this weekend.
Indeed, the Spanish Grand Prix last time out highlighted the level of ability in terms of both driver and team that Red Bull are up against and Horner is looking for a response this weekend.
Speaking ahead of the latest edition of the world's most famous street race, he said:
“Sector three [in Spain] is sometimes a good indicative view of how the car could be in Monaco.
"Hopefully in Monaco, we should be competitive. At every Grand Prix this year, bar Bahrain, there has been less than a tenth of a second between ourselves and the pole position so it has been phenomenally close.
“At Monaco, we need to make sure we beat Mercedes but we know that this will be incredibly tough.
“We knew the last two circuits would play to their strengths.
"They’ve done that and we’re an awful lot closer than we have been.
“If we can find some more race pace, it’s still very, very tight between the two cars.”
Of course, it's still early days in the season and even if Mercedes emerge victorious in Monaco it will not be the end of the world but Red Bull do need to do something to try and upset the momentum that Lewis Hamilton and co. are beginning to build.
Monaco, of course, is notoriously difficult to overtake on and so Saturday's qualifying session will probably the most crucial of the season.
Verstappen needs to turn all the dials up on his Red Bull to take the fight to his title rival, then, after Hamilton secured his 100th pole position in Spain last time out.News Now - Sport News