Red Bull team principal Christian Horner believes it is impossible for his team to improve on its current level of Formula 1 success — but is guarding against complacency creeping into the team after this season.
Red Bull has won all but one of the 16 races so far this year, only being beaten in Singapore where an uncompetitive weekend saw Max Verstappen finish fifth and Sergio Perez eighth. That was quickly put behind the team as Verstappen won comfortably in Japan to secure a sixth constructors’ championship. Horner cautions that it’s a season that will be tough for the team to follow up.
“It’s a golden moment for the team,” Horner said. “To do better than we are doing I think is impossible. We are riding a wave and we want to ride that wave as long as we can.
“But F1 is a fast-moving business — you see how quickly teams move up and move down, and Singapore demonstrated, if nothing else, that there can be zero complacency. We have to keep pushing the boundaries.”
Horner says the impact of unseen areas of a team are often overlooked but play a major role in ensuring Red Bull operates at such a high level in terms of both car performance and race execution.
“Formula 1 is one of the biggest team sports in the world and it’s a result of all the 22 different departments, all the support functions, all of the backroom staff that have worked crazy hours, made sacrifices to produce these types of cars and this kind of result,” he said. “Everybody is invested in one thing and that’s the car. To produce the kind of car we have and achieve these kind of results is an incredible performance.
“The field has been moving around behind us,” Horner noted. “One week it’s McLaren, next week it’s Ferrari, next week it’s Mercedes. We’ve been 99% consistent, 90% consistent at the front of the field. And I think we’ve been fairly limited in the amount of development that we’ve done on the car, but I think the development that we’ve done has been effective enough to maintain a reasonable margin that we’ve seen again (at Suzuka).”