Q: Max, did you envision starting this race from the second row when you got promoted to Red Bull Racing?
Max Verstappen: How can you expect something like that? But believe me: I am happy how it turned out - that’s for sure! (laughs)
Q: Then to ask in a different way: did you expect to be so quick – that the car would be so fast and that you would have such a super weekend without any difficulties transitioning?
MV: To be honest, I did not know what to expect. And what happened – and how it happened was super positive! (laughs)
Q: In the way that qualifying unfolded, did you believe that you would beat Daniel (Ricciardo), your team mate?
MV: I really never thought about beating him or anything like that. I was fully concentrating on how the car behaved and enjoying every single lap when I realised that it runs so super smooth! To know that we are competitive and that we are fine and without any issues – that was all I had on my mind. I believe it is good for the team that we saw today that Daniel and I can push each other. That should be a good signal for the future.
Q: You were faster than Daniel in Q1 and Q2, but dropped back in Q3. Do you have any explanation for that? Was it not in the car or just not a perfect lap?
MV: It is my first qualifying for Red Bull Racing so it is in no way about ‘the perfect lap’! I am just happy with the progress I am making. Every time over the weekend I got into the car I felt better and that is all that matters.
Q: Do you feel that it is a big step up from Toro Rosso to Red Bull Racing?
MV: Ha, you can clearly see it in the lap times. It was just a super positive feeling, but I am also aware that I have to find the limits step by step.
Q: Was it your limit today?
MV: It was clearly not the limit – but I am satisfied in how qualifying went today. Rome wasn’t built in one day! (laughs)
Q: From the pace you’ve seen in the car today – and also probably from the lack of pace at Ferrari – is there the podium on your mind?
MV: I will now focus on the race and not start dreaming! What will happen will happen…
Q:…but do you expect some hiccups, as the procedures are different at Red Bull Racing than at Toro Rosso?
MV: I will find that out in the race. It will definitely be an interesting learning curve!
Q: History has shown that your races tend to go sink or swim. Will you mentally prepare differently for tomorrow?
MV: No, not at all. Isn’t it my style to go about races in the style that brought me here?
Q: When you and Daniel get close in the race will you fight him as hard as you fought Carlos (Sainz) in the past?
MV: How would I know now? I would have to imagine all kinds of scenarios – and to be honest my time is too precious for that.
Q: Were you surprised that both Red Bull cars are in front of Ferrari?
MV: I am not surprised - just thankful. We had great pace today. And if it stays that way in the race I will even be more thankful!