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Formula 1

What the Teams Said – Race Day at the 2023 Great Britain

(Photo: Michael Potts)

The British Grand Prix at Silverstone delivered thrilling performances, strategic plays, and a rollercoaster of emotions for the teams and drivers. From Red Bull’s dominant run to McLaren’s impressive show of strength, Mercedes’ redemption, and the struggles of teams like Aston Martin and Alpine, each team had a unique story to tell. Here’s a breakdown of what the teams and their key players had to say about their performances on race day.

Red Bull

Another race, another tale of contrasting fortunes for the two Red Bull drivers. Verstappen lost out from pole position at the start but soon passed the impressive Norris for a lead he wouldn’t relinquish, despite a Safety Car intervention. Starting P15 after a fifth straight failure to make Q3, Perez dropped a place off the line but battled back to P6 for some reasonable damage limitation.

Max Verstappen, 1st

“I’m very happy that we’ve won here again, 11 wins in a row for the Team is pretty incredible, the whole Team can be proud of that. It definitely wasn’t straightforward today though, we had a bad start which made it more exciting for the fans, but we definitely need to look into that and improve on it. Lando and Oscar were super quick at the start so it took a few laps to pass them and to start to pull a gap. The competitors behind us were pushing hard and closing the gap so we need to try and find a little bit more. Overall though, a very nice Team win and hopefully we can carry the form to Budapest!”

Sergio Perez, 6th

“I gave it my all today but I was expecting a bit more. We had a bad start and then I got stuck with Esteban Ocon, had to go wide and ended up losing a few positions at the start. From there on I made progress slowly and recovered a few places, but it took me longer to come through the field than I would have liked. We also pitted a few laps before the safety car which was unfortunate. Tomorrow, I am going to be working with the Team in the simulator. We have some ideas on what we can improve on and I am confident that this will help us work through it. I have full support from the team, I’m mentally very strong and I know that I will overcome these issues and turn around my season. The pace is there and I can still get back to where I should be. I am looking forward to Hungary and getting back on good form.”

Christian Horner, Team Principal

“The first British GP win for the Team since 2012, Max’s second win at Silverstone and our 11th win in a row makes this a very special victory; but not without its challenges. We had expected it to be a medium-hard race but with the performance of George on the softs, we started to consider our strategy. Then with the safety car in the final quarter, we felt that the soft tyre would give Max the best opportunity to break the DRS effect and he very quickly put 2 seconds between himself and the pack. From there it was a case of managing the rest of the race and once again, Max more than rose to the occasion. Equally, Checo found fine form today. Some of his moves in the race exemplify exactly how skilful he is as a driver, particularly on Carlos into Stowe and his pace in the last stint meant he was right there. It’s frustrating for him that he has had to fight back after qualifying in recent races but he is finding his form and will find it further in Budapest.”

McLaren

What a mighty showing from McLaren, who backed up their strong qualifying with race pace that left their direct rivals reeling. Norris led the first five laps on his home Grand Prix, before losing out to Verstappen and coming home P2. He was ably backed up by Piastri, who enjoyed a fine showing to claim P4, his best-ever result in F1 – the Safety Car timing allowing Lewis Hamilton to jump ahead of him.

Lando Norris, 2nd

“First of all, I just want to say a big thanks to the whole team: they’ve done an amazing job and none of this would be possible without the hard work that they’ve been putting in. It was an amazing fight with Lewis, to hold him off, and I brought the fight to Max for as long as possible. It’s a long, lonely race when you’re just in the middle but it’s amazing to be on the podium at my home race. The whole in-lap I was just trying to wave to everyone. A big thanks to all the British fans out here supporting all of me and the whole team. We should have had P2 and P3. Oscar did an amazing job all weekend, and he should have been P3 today without the Safety Car, so a shame, he deserved it. Great result at Silverstone, we’ll keep pushing forward from here as a team.”

Oscar Piastri, 4th

“P4, what a result! Of course, it was slightly frustrating with the Safety Car, I thought we were on for a podium for a very, very long time in that race, so it hurts a little bit – but I’m very, very happy that the hurt is for a podium. Given where we started this year, I’m very, very happy. Awesome result for the whole team. It was amazing to be running back at the front again and I can’t wait for more.”

Andrea Stella, Team Principal

“This is a great team result at the British Grand Prix. It comes at the end of a very strong weekend for the MCL60, in which we’ve been able to compete at the top on both single-lap pace during qualifying, and now across race stints also. We’ve struggled in the past with the latter but today it allowed us to capitalise on an excellent performance yesterday. It’s a real shame for Oscar, he should have been on the podium but the timing of the Safety Car meant that we lost a position and he finished fourth – but that takes nothing away from the strong weekend he’s had and the incredible race he drove. I’m delighted for Lando. He got to enjoy a beautiful moment in front of his home crowd after an excellent performance. My final thoughts are for everyone who made this happen. The men and women at McLaren have worked very hard to turn the situation around this year and get us into this position, and our fans have supported us even when we’ve been struggling. This result is for all of them. I hope we can have more days like this in the future.”

Mercedes

From plenty of doom and gloom in the Mercedes camp after qualifying, race day was far more positive for the team from Brackley. Hamilton secured his 14th podium at Silverstone, claiming P3 having been off the road on Lap 1, with Russell enjoying his own battling drive to P5 to help the black-painted Silver Arrows consolidate their P2 in the constructors’ standings.

Lewis Hamilton, 3rd

“The Safety Car came at a beneficial moment for us but ultimately, that was the plan starting on the Medium tyre. We wanted to go long, and we did; it came at the right time, and we made some gains. For us to get on the podium is huge. It’s been an up-and-down season and we’ve still got a lot of work to do with our car. We’ve got strengths with it, particularly our long run. George had a great stint on the Soft tyre and mine on the Medium was really good too. As soon as we can improve the rear end we will be on our way. We just need to hold on to the good bits and add a few others. Finally, the support from the fans has been incredible and it gets better each and every year. I don’t know how that is possible as it’s the pinnacle! The energy that everyone brings is phenomenal. Once again, Silverstone put on an amazing show.”

George Russell, 5th

“We wanted to be aggressive today and we had the chance to split the strategies. The Soft tyre felt really strong in that first stint but unfortunately, it was very difficult to overtake Leclerc. There was some questionable defending at points but in the end, I managed to get past. Having stopped for the Medium tyre, it was unfortunate timing with the Safety Car. Sometimes it goes for you, sometimes against you. Ultimately though, we only lost one position and without it, I still wouldn’t have ended up on the podium. It didn’t change a huge amount for my race, and we can take the positives that for the Team, it is good points in the Constructors’ Championship.”

Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO

“We’ve performed well today compared to in Qualifying. We’ve gained some points on our closest competitors in the Constructors’ Championship, so we can say it’s a solid day. P3 and P5 is OK, but no more than solid. I see the positives from this weekend, though. Whilst podiums are good, it’s more important to see that the car has potential, and our eyes are on closing the gap to the very front. We wanted to have an offset between the two cars today and the Soft tyre provided a good getaway from the line. It also looked quite resilient on Friday, and it proved even more so today. We were surprised to see how long it went. After the restart, Lewis’ tires went off, and the McLarens were able to hold us behind. Their resurgence is good to see. If you make the right decisions, you can clearly make a large step. It is good for the sport that if you do the right things, then you can move forward. Today, they had a better car, and you could see particularly in the closing stages on the Hard tyre just how strong they were.”

Andrew Shovlin, Trackside Engineering Director

“It was great to get a car on the podium today. We needed the Safety Car to make that, but we were in the right position with one car to take advantage of it. Overall, it’s been a solid day for the team and drivers. We’ve managed to out-score both Ferrari and Aston Martin, which is good for the Constructors

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