Christian Horner

Akshita Patel

Red Bull Forced To Shift Focus On 2024 Car Concept In The Aftermath Of Cost Cap Penalties!

After a win at the recently concluded Hungarian Grand Prix, Red Bull Racing has surpassed McLaren to become the team to have the most consecutive constructors wins in a season. Max Verstappen, despite being declined a pole position, faced the checkered flag first with a gap of 22 seconds. He led the team to its 12th consecutive win to take a massive lead in the constructors’ championship.

Moreover, Red Bull brought a set of upgrades this race weekend. The sidepods and floor were tweaked, which helped them in gaining crucial seconds. However, Christian Horner, the team principal, has confirmed that the team will no longer bring any more upgrades to RB19. Their development focus will shift to next year because of a huge penalty clinging to their heads.

   

Wind Tunnel Penalty Forces Red Bull To Shift Development Focus To 2024

Red Bull
Credit: Getty Images

The wind tunnel penalty is designed to limit excessive spending on aerodynamic development and promote cost-saving measures in the sport. The penalty restricts the number of hours a team can use its wind tunnel for testing and development purposes. As per F1’s Aerodynamic Testing Restrictions, the teams at the top of the constructors’ standings will get less availability for both wind tunnel and CFD runs. Since Red Bull is leading the constructors’ table, they will have only 70% of the baseline allocation. Compared to this, Mercedes stands at 75%, Aston Martin at 80%, and Ferrari at 85%. On top of that, the drink-based team has an additional 10% penalty for violating the cost cap regulations in 2021.

According to Christian Horner, Red Bull has stopped the development of its current RB19. The wind tunnel development time penalty has forced them to shift their focus on developing the 2024 season’s RB20. Horner believes that compared to McLaren, their amount of wind tunnel runs is a lot less. That makes a huge difference in overall car development. As a result, the team’s engineers back at Milton Keynes are being very selective and careful with the test runs. The team boss also added that upgrades in 2024 would be more track specific. That remains the plan. But nothing has been confirmed by the R&D department for now. Overall, the reigning champion of F1 seems worried about the rivals catching up to them in the future. That will seemingly hinder their ongoing dominance.

Christian Horner Hits Back At Hamilton, Russell For Criticising Cost Cap Penalties

Christian Horner, Lewis Hamilton
Photo: © LAT Images

Red Bull Racing violated the cost cap regulation in the very first season of its implementation. They apparently went overboard with the “catering” budget. As a result, the team received $7 million in financial penalties and a 10% reduction in wind tunnel time. However, word around the circuit has been that the penalties were mild and did not affect Red Bull’s overall development. Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell have recently issued the same concern, which has irked Christian Horner.

The Red Bull boss clapped back at the Mercedes duo immediately. He said that it’s easy to throw shade at someone when you are not performing. To hide your own shortcomings, you want to get rid of the competition. Horner again established that the wind tunnel penalty had put them way behind their rivals in overall car development. Due to the penalties, the team has been forced to abandon this year’s progress. The team of engineers is now focused on developing a car for the 2024 season.