Jenson Button paints bleak picture for Red Bull’s rivals after Miami masterclass

Jamie Woodhouse
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen during FP3. Miami May 2023.

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen in the team's special one-off livery in free practice. Miami May 2023.

Another race, another F1 2023 one-two finish for Red Bull, and ex-World Champion Jenson Button is struggling to see where Red Bull can be beaten after a fresh dominant showing in Miami.

While Sergio Perez was in prime position for the win as he started from pole, team-mate Max Verstappen had work to do from P9 after Charles Leclerc’s Q3 crash cost him the chance to set a time.

As it turned out though, this was merely a slight obstacle which Verstappen would overcome.

Cutting his way through the pack, Verstappen was up to P2 behind Perez come Lap 15, and from there made his alternate strategy work to perfection having started on the hard tyre.

When Verstappen ultimately pitted on Lap 46, Perez went back into the lead with an advantage of just 1.5 seconds over Verstappen, one which Verstappen quickly eliminated to pass his team-mate two laps later with those fresh medium tyres, going on to take the win from there.

With Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Azerbaijan and Miami all now in the books, that Red Bull RB19 has reigned supreme throughout high-speed and slower, technical challenges, and now Button is questioning where in the remaining 18 rounds Red Bull could realistically be stopped.

“It’s going to be a tough team to beat this year at any any track we go to,” said Button on Sky Sports F1.

“It’s worked on street courses, fast courses, low-speed stuff, it’s just phenomenal. So yeah, it’s going to be tricky.” recommends

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That being said, Button acknowledged that it was positive to at least see a bit of a battle between Perez and Verstappen in those runaway Red Bulls, the Brit surprised that Verstappen’s strategy worked out so ideally for him, with Red Bull having been sure pre-race that Perez’s medium to hard route was the better one.

“But nice to have a race between the two Red Bulls at least at the front,” Button continued.

“The alternative strategy working for Max, which is a little bit of a surprise, but the medium tyres really struggled on the dirty track and they worked much better at the end for Max so well played by him, but it’s always a little bit luck on your side and good job by the whole team.”

With the Miami victory and bonus point for fastest lap to boot, Verstappen has extended his lead over Perez at the head of the Drivers’ standings to 14 points.