Updated on 05/11/2022 at 14:17
- Red Bull Racing has overtaken Ferrari in terms of performance after five races, but the advantage is minimal.
- Now that Ferrari is in demand, the Italians want to make some upgrades to the car for the upcoming race in Barcelona.
- Team boss Mattia Binotto is also hopeful that the discount budget limit will soon become an issue.
Max Verstappen was exhausted after his Miami GP win, but still aggressive. The Dutchman has finally tasted blood after a false start to the Formula 1 season. That is why he took the opportunity to give his team the way for the upcoming races. “We are fast, but we really need to control the stability issues,” the world champion said. “Obviously there is a lot of potential, we just have to make sure the car is reliable,” he confirmed after he managed to reduce the gap on championship leader Charles Leclerc to 19 points with his second win in a row.
Because at the moment the rider from Red Bull Racing seems to have a slight edge in the fencing with Ferrari, having initially been behind the Scuderia. “Red Bull has improved its car,” Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto said. “Since the start of the season they have introduced upgrades and if you look back at the last two races, you are probably a few tenths faster than us,” he said.
Minimal Verstappen Feature
This is probably due to the fact that Red Bull Racing in general is a bit faster than Ferrari on the straight tracks, but was also on par with Red on the slow corners. The Verstappen team has been improving the car’s aerodynamics over the past few weeks, as well as reducing weight, which helps in corners. In addition, tire degradation is not as high as with Ferrari, which enabled Verstappen to attack Leclerc decisively in Miami despite starting in third on the race track.
However, the constant concern about failures remains. Verstappen had no issues in Miami, but teammate Sergio Perez, who had problems with a sensor in the engine, did. The team was able to prevent the Mexican from withdrawing, but Perez missed the podium in fourth, which would have been entirely possible had the sensor not worked.
However: Red Bull Racing has developed an advantage in dueling with Ferrari, albeit very little. Just wondering how long it will last? “Now we have to keep pushing,” said Leclerc, adding that car upgrades would be “very important” in the title fight. It is assumed that Ferrari could “take a step forward” in Barcelona in a couple of weeks. Binotto also knows that you have to make updates to the car to “keep the pace”.
It will be the first major improvement over the F1-75. The big difference from the past: While in the past it was often a development battle, there are other things that matter today. Because in times of budget upper bound, timing is also important. “We have to try and focus development on the time that we think is the right time and the right spending,” Binotto said. The teams have a total of $140 million at their disposal in 2022. Each development error is not only painful from a sporting point of view, it is also doubly costly. Literally.
That’s why you have to pay attention to the money in Red Bull Racing. “I hope at some point Red Bull will stop development because there is also a budget limit, otherwise I don’t understand how they can do that. That is certainly a concern for them,” said Binotto. And Red Bull boss Christian Horner confirms this, saying: “With the budget ceiling, it’s difficult to provide continuous updates, especially with high inflation, which is brutal.”
Must fit new parts
Ferrari Challenge: New parts have to fit in the car. The situation offers the possibility of decisive advantages or disadvantages in a title fight. Leclerc “I’m confident in my team and I’m sure they will take us back to the top. I hope these upgrades will help us challenge Red Bull again.” Time is running out – because Verstappen has tasted blood again a long time ago.
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