Max Verstappen is looking forward to returning to the "special" Circuit de Catalunya for next weekend's Spanish Grand Prix and has challenged Red Bull to hit the ground running in Barcelona owing to their familiarity with a track visited numerous times in the Formula 1 year.
Verstappen holds special memories of the venue, having secured his maiden grand prix win on his Red Bull debut there in 2016.
A repeat three years on may count on Mercedes and Ferrari falling short, as it did in 2016 as the Silver Arrows drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg crashed on the opening lap.
Having followed up a podium in Australia with a trio of fourth-place finishes so far this year, Verstappen believes the next race could be a key indicator for the season ahead with many teams planning upgrades.
"Our next race is back in Europe at Barcelona Circuit, which is the track where I won my first F1 race, so it is always a special one for me," he said.
"It's a good track and we all test there during pre-season so hopefully that will help us set-up the car straight away.
"Of course, the temperatures will be a bit different and everyone is bringing new parts to their cars, so it will be interesting to see how competitive we can be.
"There are some fast corners so it's always a challenging circuit, and being closer to home, it will be good to see so many fans in the grandstands.
"For us, the main thing is to keep maximising our results while we hopefully continue to close the gap to the championship leaders."
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