Christian Horner said Red Bull’s new recruit Max Verstappen reminded him of a young Sebastian Vettel following the 18-year-old’s first outing in the RB12 at the Spanish Grand Prix.
Verstappen set the eighth fastest time in second practice, just 0.181s off teammate Daniel Ricciardo, but said he had not yet pushed to the limit. Team boss Horner said Verstappen’s first day in the car had brought back memories of four-time champion Vettel’s debut with the team back in 2009.
“I’m certainly happy with the start Max has made,” Horner told Sky Sports. “What’s impressive about him is how cool and calm he is in the car, very clear. He reminds me a little bit of Sebastian Vettel with his demeanour in the car.”
Verstappen said his practice debut had not been about chasing lap time.
“It is still a bit too early to say [what the car is capable of] because I have not gone to the limit yet with the car because we are still getting used to it. But the seat position is completely different and the functions on the steering wheel, so that is really a big difference.”
Asked to rate his day out of 10, Verstappen gave himself a modest seven.