Red Bull deny changing ride height after concerning Bahrain pace

Red Bull locked-out the front row for the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

Defending double World Champion Max Verstappen started 2023 in supreme fashion, by claiming the first pole position of the season and the 21st of his career in Formula 1, after setting a mega 1:29.708 at the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Verstappen looked strong throughout qualifying and was predicted as the driver to beat ahead of this weekend, with himself and Red Bull having looked sensational during qualifying.

Interestingly, qualifying was arguably the best Verstappen has looked all weekend, with the Dutchman having not been completely happy with his RB19 during all three Free Practice sessions at the Bahrain International Circuit.

Red Bull were seemingly happier with the car’s performance during pre-season testing than they were after Free Practice 3, with both Verstappen and Sergio Pérez having complained about a few things.

READ: Max Verstappen’s car being investigated for ‘strange behaviour’

With the Milton Keynes-based team having appeared to have lost performance on Friday and Saturday morning in Bahrain, Sky Sports F1 reporter Ted Kravitz asked the team if they’d raised their ride height, something which had been speculated.

Red Bull denied to having raised their ride height since pre-season testing, with Kravitz having reported that the Austrians were running a similar ride height to pre-season.

There were certainly no questions about Red Bull’s performance come Q3, though, given that the Austrians locked-out the front row for the first race of 2023.

Pérez claimed second on the grid after going just over a tenth slower than Verstappen, with Charles Leclerc rounding off the top three.

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Whilst Verstappen and Pérez both had two attempts at pole, Leclerc opted to just complete the one run, with the Monegasque deciding to instead take a new set of Soft tyres into the race.

READ: Bahrain GP: Several Mercedes upgrades revealed after woeful pre-season test

Carlos Sainz claimed fourth on the grid to make it a Ferrari 3-4 behind the Red Bull 1-2, with Fernando Alonso having secured fifth on the grid for Aston Martin.

Alonso will be on Red Bull’s and Ferrari’s radar come the race, with the double World Champion having boasted excellent race pace during Free Practice.

Behind Alonso were the two Mercedes’, who were closer to the front than initially predicted, with the Silver Arrows having found some performance during FP3.