Christian Horner revealed he felt Red Bull "could only lose" after seeing Max Verstappen pitched into the wall by a dramatic tyre blow-out in the closing stages of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
Verstappen had led for much of the race and looked set to lead home the team's first one-two in F1 since 2016 until the incident which caused a red flag and left Sergio Perez and Lewis Hamilton in a two-lap fight to the finish.
Horner told Sky Sports F1: “I think I’ve aged about 20 years! We [had] everything in control and then boom, the tyre went. It looked like the wear was all in good shape. A big place to have an accident, thankfully he’s okay.
"We were managing the tyre pretty well, so you can see it suddenly deflated. Whether it’s a bit of debris from the shunt [Lance Stroll] earlier, you just don’t know. The feeling at that point was like the world’s just dropped from under us.
"You thought we could only lose when they’ve got the restart but thankfully it all worked out tremendously well and Sergio did a great, great job."
Perez delivered "stunning" drive
Horner praised Perez for a “stunning” race to victory after the Mexican put himself in a position to inherit the lead, then fend off Hamilton at the restart as well as manage a hydraulic issue through to the end.
Hamilton put in a strong challenge off the line at the restart, only to lock his brakes and slide straight on at the first corner.
“I’m just so pleased with Sergio," added Horner.
"His races have been so strong and today he’s absolutely delivered. [At the restart, we were] just praying that the hydraulic pressure that we were all glued to for the last couple of laps just stayed there, and it was fantastic to see him cross the line.
“He won that on merit. [He] has been quick all weekend, the only lap he didn’t get right was the quali one yesterday, the first run in Q3. His pace was stunning in the race. He’s a wily driver, a canny racer, he races really well."
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