Red Bull: Honda has made 'good progress' over winter

  • 06 Feb 2019 12:22
  • comments 12
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner believes that Honda has made strong progress over the winter break. The Japanese manufacturer will supply Red Bull with engines for the 2019 Formula 1 season.

Honda spent last year with Red Bull's junior squad Toro Rosso, who ended the season ninth in the constructors' championship. Red Bull is hoping that its new partnership will allow it to compete for world championships - something it wasn't able to do in the hybrid era with Renault.

"They have had a strong winter," said Horner. "Red Bull Technology have been working with Honda for 12 months now, having supplied the gearbox and drivetrain solution for Toro Rosso.

"So we have seen behind the scenes their evolution. They are making good progress. Stability of regulations will help them.

"They have settled on a concept and, for the first time since their re-entry to F1, that has continued from one season to the next without it being a completely clean sheet of paper. It will all depend on what the others have done, but certainly versus themselves there has been good progress."

Although Honda made a step pace-wise from 2017 last year, it still lagged behind in terms of reliability. However, Horner says that Red Bull will not be flustered if it is forced to take "a penalty or two" throughout the year.

"Obviously it has been a huge challenge to do 21 races on three engines," he said. "We would rather see consistent evolution, even if that means taking a penalty or two along the way.

"As we saw last year, the impact of those penalties at the right venues can be fairly minimal. So long as the progress and the trajectory is in the right way, there is a lot of optimism within the team, within the factory, and excitement about working in collaboration with the new partner."

Replies (12)

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  • jsxF1fan

    Posts: 6

    I have a feeling Renault has made a lot of gains as well, they with held updates to concentrate on development last year.

    • + 0
    • Feb 6 2019 - 19:03
    • f1ski

      Posts: 288

      what have you been smoking

      • + 0
      • Feb 6 2019 - 23:12
    • Major Tom

      Posts: 148

      The problem will be that Ferrari and Mercedes are also likely to have made good gains.

      • + 0
      • Feb 8 2019 - 12:02
  • I think they've done a fair job. Only one way to know, really, but a alot that isn't RB seem to imply good stuff is ahead. The fact that they didn't have to make any major revisions in the base design imply they are on the right track. The spiel about "versus themselves there has been good progress" basically says jack shyte though, since I think most suppliers have done good progress compared to their 2018 specs. Anything else would've been a downgrade.

    • + 0
    • Feb 6 2019 - 19:48
  • boudy

    Posts: 1,045

    Agreed all suppliers improved in 2018. However Renault let RBR have an upgrade that they didn't trust themselves. With the investment by both RBR and Honda improvements will be visible in 2019. Renault has been harping on about their improvements the last couple of years without much gain towards the top 2 to show. However I don't believe that we have seen the true pace of the Mercedes yet so it's hard to say how much the others have to catch up.

    Can't wait for the testing.

    • + 0
    • Feb 6 2019 - 21:50
    • blade

      Posts: 341

      Cant wait for race proper in Melbourne - will there be a Brawn surprise?

      • + 0
      • Feb 6 2019 - 21:55
    • Probably not a Brawn Brawn kinda surprise, but we can at least hope there'll be 3 serious title contenders rather than just 2.

      • + 0
      • Feb 7 2019 - 05:14
    • mcbhargav

      Posts: 856

      Best case scaenario: 1. Merc and Ferrari being closely matched 2. Honda made a huge jump, with Redbull fetching 4 race wins 3. Renault stealing 3-4 podiums. Haas,RPF, and Sauber rounding out with 2 podiums each.

      • + 0
      • Feb 8 2019 - 04:55
    • I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if RP get to snatch a podium or two, they've done it before, so I think they can do it again.

      • + 0
      • Feb 8 2019 - 05:09
  • websurfer

    Posts: 49

    You know NOTHING at all before the racers have been driving some laps. FACT.

    • + 0
    • Feb 6 2019 - 22:49
    • f1ski

      Posts: 288

      racing laps

      • + 0
      • Feb 6 2019 - 23:12
    • Major Tom

      Posts: 148

      That's true but past experience of rule stability would suggest that the field might have closed up - at least a bit.

      • + 0
      • Feb 8 2019 - 12:05

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