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Verstappen warns against Red Bull complacency

Verstappen warns against Red Bull complacency

Verstappen warns against Red Bull complacency

Verstappen warns against Red Bull complacency

Max Verstappen has insisted Red Bull must avoid complacency and continue to develop the RB18 to ensure an F1 championship victory despite boasting a comfortable advantage over rival Charles Leclerc.

The Ferrari driver sits 63 points adrift in the drivers' standings after 12 of 22 races on the calendar having retired from the French Grand Prix in the lead.

No driver has ever overturned a deficit of larger than 44 points to win the title - though Verstappen himself was 46 points down after the first three races.

Red Bull has traditionally been the best team at developing its car through a campaign and Verstappen, who almost lost out last season despite holding a strong advantage over Lewis Hamilton at a similar stage of the championship, has called for his team to keep pushing.

“We still need to bring updates to the car and they need to work all the time and it is no guarantee," said the Dutchman.

"When people say ‘Red Bull has been really good in the past at bringing upgrades and developments’, we have to show it again because every year, if you start thinking like that, normally you will fall behind because you think you are that good.

“We always have to show that we are good at it and that is what we are trying to do.”

Verstappen still "chasing"

Despite Red Bull securing eight wins to Ferrari's four - Verstappen taking seven of his teams' victories - the consensus has been that the Scuderia has the edge over its rivals.

But whilst Leclerc has now retired from the lead of a race three times, as well as Ferrari strategy failing on other occasions - notably at Monaco - Verstappen and Red Bull have capitalised to surge ahead.

“I think so far there has never been a dominant weekend for us," conceded Verstappen.

"Because I think, in general at the start of the year, we were the ones chasing and trying to beat Ferrari.

“Then, of course, they had a few retirements and we took advantage of that or through strategy calls.

“So I think overall from my feeling, it is still a bit of chasing and also what I said with the weight of the car, we are still overweight which is costing us lap time as well.”

Additional reporting by Ian Parkes

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