Red Bull: Design strengths blunted by new F1 aero/tyres

Red Bull thinks its early 2019 performance has been hit by a double whammy of an aero rule overhaul and a change to tyres.

Red Bull: Design strengths blunted by new F1 aero/tyres

Although the Milton Keynes-based team is now making good progress with its car, and Max Verstappen is Mercedes’ closest challenger in the world championship, it has faced some struggles in getting on top of its RB15.

Horner thinks its situation was not helped by the thinner-tread tyres and the revamp to the front wing rules that was introduced to boost overtaking.

“It is probably a combination of the two,” he explained about the factors that have held Red Bull back so far.

“Obviously there’s 25% less rubber on these tyres and they’re stiffer, and we were very good on the tyre at the end of last year.

“I also think the concept of aerodynamics that we’ve evolved over the last few years was obviously very sensitive to the front wings, so we’re just having to rebalance that and refocus that.”

More from Spanish GP:

Horner thinks the key now is steady progress with both the Red Bull chassis and the Honda engine to keep pushing further forwards.

“It’s all about evolution and I think Honda are making good progress,” he said. “Their reliability compared to previous years has been fantastic. Performance is strong. But the others don’t stand still either.

“We can see Ferrari introduced another engine this weekend, and Renault introduced an upgrade this weekend. Mercedes no doubt will around Montreal introduce another engine. Of course your opponents don’t stand still but we’re very happy with the progress that’s being made.”

Asked if he felt that just five races in the title battle was over though, Horner said: “I think it’s very much a Mercedes championship. You can see that after five races that they’re three points off of maximum score. It’s still a long year and we take things race by race."

But while not dreaming of closing down on Mercedes, Horner has no doubts that at some point the German car manufacturer will be overhauled.

“Anybody can be beaten,” he said. “Formula 1 is all about teamwork, it’s about the biggest teams in the world.

“Mercedes, at the moment, are on the crest of a wave but that never lasts forever. Our job is to ensure we have all the tools and capabilities to take that challenge to them in the coming years.”

shares
comments
Drivers wary of "very processional" F1 racing at Zandvoort

Previous article

Drivers wary of "very processional" F1 racing at Zandvoort

Next article

Mazepin fastest for Mercedes in Barcelona F1 test

Mazepin fastest for Mercedes in Barcelona F1 test
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Red Bull Racing
Author Jonathan Noble
How F1's street track return can offer Verstappen redemption Prime

How F1's street track return can offer Verstappen redemption

Red Bull has failed to capitalise on having the best car in the opening rounds. BEN EDWARDS thinks change is around the corner.

The AlphaTauri improvements that mean Gasly’s form is no fluke Prime

The AlphaTauri improvements that mean Gasly’s form is no fluke

Pierre Gasly has driven superbly since demotion from Red Bull in 2019, but the team formerly known as Toro Rosso has come on strong too – building a car that can often challenge Ferrari and McLaren. Here Gasly reveals to ALEX KALINAUCKAS how AlphaTauri has given him the tools needed to rebuild his reputation

Formula 1
May 17, 2021
Why Bottas feels the time has come to be “more selfish” Prime

Why Bottas feels the time has come to be “more selfish”

We’ve seen five distinct versions of Valtteri Bottas at Mercedes as he’s tried to fulfil his own ambitions while being a consummate team player – two difficult, competing missions which have been challenging to reconcile. Speaking exclusively to Stuart Codling, Bottas explains his highs and lows… and why he still believes he can be world champion.

Formula 1
May 15, 2021
How long can Verstappen and Hamilton keep it clean? Prime

How long can Verstappen and Hamilton keep it clean?

Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen have been evenly matched so far in the 2021 Formula 1 title race. Neither has been afraid to get aggressive against each other on track, teeing up an enthralling contest as the year unwinds. But how long will their battle remain clean? Jonathan Noble ponders that exact point

Formula 1
May 13, 2021
How Brabham’s one-hit wonder was boxed into a corner Prime

How Brabham’s one-hit wonder was boxed into a corner

The Brabham BT46B raced once, won once, then vanished – or did it? STUART CODLING reveals the story of the car which was never actually banned…

Formula 1
May 11, 2021
The changes Barcelona needs to provide a modern-day F1 spectacle Prime

The changes Barcelona needs to provide a modern-day F1 spectacle

Formula 1’s visits to Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya over recent years have been met with familiar criticisms despite tweaks here and there to the track to improve racing. With the 2021 Spanish Grand Prix largely going the same way, proper solutions need to be followed to achieve F1’s wider targets

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Often described as Formula 1's laboratory, the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona gave the clearest demonstration yet of the pecking order in 2021. And it's the key discrepancies from that order which illuminate who is excelling, and who needs to hit the reset button.

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
How Red Bull's deja vu set Hamilton on the winning path in Spain Prime

How Red Bull's deja vu set Hamilton on the winning path in Spain

An aggressive first corner move from Max Verstappen appeared to have set the Red Bull driver on course for victory in the Spanish Grand Prix. But canny strategy from Mercedes - combined with the absence of Red Bull's number two from the lead group - allowed Lewis Hamilton to pull off a demoralising reversal

Formula 1
May 10, 2021