What the teams are saying – Japan Qualifiers
Verstappen dominated FP3 through practice sessions and was never really in doubt about pole position. The only question is how much he will take. After getting through Q1 and Q2 on just one set of tyres, he got two new sets of tires for Q3 and managed to get his RB19 into P1 by more than half a second for his biggest gain here in 19 years. Perez can’t match that – the Mexican, like most players, can’t come close. He had to settle for fifth place, behind Leclerc’s McLarens and Ferraris. FIND OUT MORE:
Verstappen hailed his race for pole against Suzuka as ‘fantastic’ as Red Bull regained form
Max Verstappen, 1st, 1:
“It’s been a crazy weekend so far, we’ve reached another level. The car was on track and I could really push it hard. I sent them all today. When the car is good it makes the track even more special, it really makes me smile. I only have three sets of new tires so I have to be careful when using them. In the future, the deterioration will be very significant and therefore we will have to take care of our tires. It won’t be easy, that’s for sure. The aim is to win the constructors’ championship this weekend, especially at Honda.
Sergio Pérez, 5th, 1:
“Today was not as easy as we hoped. I had a pretty tough qualifying and we struggled a bit with the balance of the car this weekend. Ultimately, losing our second set of tires in Q2 and going into Q3 with just one set of tires really put us behind. We thought we weren’t profitable so in the end that meant we missed out. Today wasn’t ideal but we tried our best and I really believe we can still have a good race tomorrow. McLaren has good race pace so I think tomorrow will be a good battle for them. Finally, Max is in great form and we are looking forward to race day tomorrow; hopefully we can go home with the championship and finish P1 and P2 tomorrow.