Max Verstappen says Red Bull's engine deficit relative to Ferrari and Mercedes leaves him unsure whether pole position is a realistic target for the Hungarian Grand Prix.
The tight and twisty nature of the Budapest circuit was expected to suit Red Bull going into this weekend and it showed in Friday practice with Daniel Ricciardo topping the morning session and Verstappen ending FP2 just 0.074s behind Sebastian Vettel.
Despite performing well in Friday practice, Verstappen is unsure whether pole position will be within reach due to the advantage Ferrari and Mercedes have in the opening part of the lap, which is predominantly straights.
"I think the car was good, we still lose quite a lot on the straight, unfortunately,'' Verstappen said. "I think it's a bit difficult to say. We can improve our car a little bit more, but whether it's going to be enough for pole position I'm not sure.
With overtaking so difficult in Hungary, Ricciardo says qualifying on the front two rows of the grid is a must if Red Bull is to make of the most of its typically stronger race pace relative to qualifying.
"I want to be on the front row, I want to win so the front row will help,'' Ricciardo said. "We have got a good enough car. On one lap, we can still make some adjustments. On long runs, it's all very close. I predicted the top six will be close this weekend and I think come tomorrow it will be. Seb did a good lap and we know they are quick on Saturdays. There's still a bit of time to find on one lap, but a good start.
"We really need to try and put ourselves...front row would be perfect. Second row, I think we could still do it. But we don't want to be on the third row. We want to be on at least the first two.''