Ferrari close to Mercedes says Steiner

Mercedes and Ferrari are leading the 2017 pack, according to a rival chief.

After two days of testing, the boss of the small American team Haas said: "The Mercedes is a beautiful and well designed car.

"But the Ferrari is also fantastic," Gunther Steiner also told the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet. "They are the two fastest cars out there.

"From what I've seen so far, I think Ferrari is pretty close to Mercedes. What Ferrari has shown is very encouraging, because we might have a close fight for the championship," he added. "I hope so."

However, Max Verstappen says it is too early to play down the chances of his team, Red Bull.

"I was getting used to the car and getting through the programme," the Dutch driver said after Tuesday's running in Barcelona, according to Het Laatste Nieuws newspaper.

"The speed? That comes later."

(GMM)

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