After a strong weekend in Monaco, Honda continues to be in good shape in Azerbaijan. All four Honda-powered cars were in the top ten after the second free practice session, with Red Bull Racing’s Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen taking first and second places. So, Honda CEO Toyoharu Tanabe looks back on his first good day in Baku.
In the first free practice Verstappen was already in good shape, but it wasn’t that easy. “On the first day of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, the road surface at this street circuit was very dirty, which was made worse by the strong winds that occurred yesterday”Tanabe said in press release from Honda. “However, conditions improved as more cars entered the circuit. Today we saw many cars lose their braking points and had to use the pit lanes, interrupting the laps several times.”
In the end, Verstappen was the fastest in the first free practice and Perez was fourth. So all in all a good day. “However, all four of our drivers were able to do some good laps and got through the day without any major issues. In VT2, all four were in the top 10 so this is a good start to the weekend for us.”
I am looking for the right place
Perez and Verstappen were the fastest on the track today, but Tanabe does not dare to sit still. “It’s hard to find the right position on this track, so we can expect our competitors to make progress tomorrow.” Ferrari is particularly close, just as it is in Monaco. Sainz only conceded one tenth of Perez’s time in second free practice, Leclerc followed by three tenths.
Tanabe believes there is still room for improvement for both teams on the chassis and engine side. “We will now analyze all of today’s data to see what we can do to get the most out of qualifying and racing.”