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Verstappen: Championship lead “bigger than it should have been”

LE CASTELLET, FRANCE - JULY 24: Race winner Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing looks on in the press conference after the F1 Grand Prix of France at Circuit Paul Ricard on July 24, 2022 in Le Castellet, France. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool.

Max Verstappen believes that his advantage over Charles Leclerc in the standings is too big given the performance of Red Bull and Ferrari.

Verstappen won the French GP last Sunday, while his championship rival Leclerc retired from the race after a crash on lap 18 of 53. The two are now separated by 63 points in the Drivers’ Championship. Furthermore, Red Bull are 82 points ahead of Ferrari in the Constructors’ Championship.

Despite a significant advantage, Verstappen intends to “stay focused”.

“Of course, it’s a great lead but a lot of things can happen and I just want to stay focused; we need a lot more good results, a lot more one-lap pace,” he said.

“The next race is Budapest, and I think that will be a bit more of a struggle for us, where I think Ferrari is going to be really, really quick. It’s all about scoring points every single race, even when it’s not your race.

“From our side, we know that we have to find, especially over one lap, quite a bit of performance. We’ll be working on it. It’s still important to always score points, even on a bad day, which we had in Austria. Of course, the lead we have is great, but it’s probably a bit bigger than what it should have been when you look at the car performances between the two cars.”

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