Red Bull baffled by Mercedes F1 engine comments

Red Bull does not know why Formula 1 rival Mercedes thinks its straightline speed advantage at the French Grand Prix was down to a step forward with its Honda engine.

Red Bull baffled by Mercedes F1 engine comments
Listen to this article

Max Verstappen's victory at Paul Ricard last weekend was helped by the impressive top speed of his car, which assisted him in staving off an attack from Lewis Hamilton in the midpoint of the race.

But while Red Bull's low-downforce rear wing configuration was a key factor in its advantage on the straights, Mercedes also suspected that a change of engines was involved too. Honda elected to move both Red Bull and AlphaTauri on to their second power unit of the year for France, with Mercedes having moved across in Baku.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said about Red Bull's form in France: "They have made a huge step forward with their power unit, the introduction of the second power unit. And their race car is good, no doubt about that."

But with F1's homologation rules meaning the teams must run with the same specification engine all season, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner reckoned that there was no difference in power terms, even though fresh spec units can often be pushed hard.

"We're not allowed to make progress," he said in reaction to Wolff's comments. "I don't know what he's referencing there.

"I think that it's the same specification as the first unit. We've run a much smaller rear wing, so that's why the straight line performance was strong. I think Honda are doing a great job, but we don't see a sudden significant increase in power."

Read Also:

Honda F1 technical director Toyoharu Tanabe reckoned that while Red Bull was pushing with updates to improve the car, any engine gains were probably down to better energy management.

"On the team side we are introducing new parts so that we can evolve every race," he said. "The power unit is the same [specification] all the time, but we are learning better how to use energy management etc. for every race.

"We are looking at the characteristics of each circuit, and I think that such daily developments are connected to the current improvement."

shares
comments

Related video

Mercedes F1 can still stop Red Bull if "we perform at our best"
Previous article

Mercedes F1 can still stop Red Bull if "we perform at our best"

Next article

Can Red Bull really win anywhere now it’s toppled a Mercedes F1 stronghold?

Can Red Bull really win anywhere now it’s toppled a Mercedes F1 stronghold?
Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment? Prime

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment?

The Singapore Grand Prix has, explains Ben Edwards, played an important role in Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career. As the series returns to the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in three years, he faces the latest challenge with an underperforming Mercedes car.

Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals Prime

Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals

Although Ferrari's chances of title glory in 2022 have evaporated, chairman John Elkann expects the team to have chalked up both championships by 2026. Both require drivers to play the team game and, having now become more comfortable with the F1-75, Carlos Sainz may be Ferrari's key to title glory

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2022
How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era Prime

How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era

Stuart Codling charts the development of the Williams FW09, the ugly duckling that heralded the start of the title-winning Williams-Honda partnership

Formula 1
Sep 25, 2022
The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared Prime

The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared

Recent moves within the driver market have reminded Maurce Hamilton of a time when contracts weren’t worth the paper they weren’t written on…

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2022
The seven factors powering Verstappen's 2022 F1 domination Prime

The seven factors powering Verstappen's 2022 F1 domination

After a tooth and nail and, at times, toxic Formula 1 world championship scrap last year, Max Verstappen's march to a second consecutive title has been the exact opposite. But has he really changed in 2022? Here's a dive into what factors have played a crucial role, both inside the Verstappen camp and elsewhere, in the Dutch driver's domination.

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2022
The time lag of ideas that offers intrigue over F1's future fight Prime

The time lag of ideas that offers intrigue over F1's future fight

The pecking order in 2022's Formula 1 season may look pretty static as the season draws to a close, but the unique nature of the cost cap means that preparation for next season takes precedence. New developments are being pushed back to 2023, which could mask the technical development war ongoing...

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2022
The surprise biggest indicator of Ferrari's 2022 F1 points downfall Prime

The surprise biggest indicator of Ferrari's 2022 F1 points downfall

Looking back to the early races of 2022 and Ferrari’s challenge to Red Bull and Max Verstappen was going better than many expected. But it has lost so much ground a surprise rival can even pip Charles Leclerc to runner-up in the standings if given the chance

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2022
The F1 podium-finisher that gave Jordan stability in a year of chaos Prime

The F1 podium-finisher that gave Jordan stability in a year of chaos

The Hart-powered Jordan 194 gave the team hope that the good times were just around the corner. Its 1994 steed wasn’t the start of a move up F1’s pecking order - even if the car did earn the Silverstone team a first pole position. But, as STUART CODLING explains, it did provide a platform for Jordan to become a manufacturer-supported squad.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2022