Red Bull’s penalty for exceeding the 2021 cost cap is still having an impact on the squad, although team manager Christian Horner says there has been at least one benefit.
Red Bull’s cost cap punishment, in the perspective of Christian Horner, has enabled the squad to “grow in drive” and sharpen its efficiency focus.
The Milton Keynes-based company was told in October that for breaking the financial rules in 2021, they would have to pay a $7 million fine and forfeit 10% of their aerodynamic development allowance.
Since that time, the team has completed about 25% of the penalty, and the fine has been paid as well as some of the first 12 months of the development punishment.
Horner realized that it was “essential” for the team to have a strong start in light of the penalty, but also highlighted a positive to come from the situation given that Red Bull finished 1-2 in the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.
Horner: team has been more focused after the penalty
“I think it just focuses everybody’s mind,” Horner told media, including RacingNews365.com.
“It drives efficiency. What we lost in wind tunnel time, we gained in motivation.”
Many of the team’s competitors predicted that Red Bull would keep doing well after Max Verstappen’s strong performance in Bahrain, with George Russell guessing that the squad might dominate all races in 2023.
This is not a given, Horner has cautioned, and things could change as the season goes on.
“I’ve been around long enough to see things change so quickly,” the team boss said.
“I think that these cars are still relatively immature and, as teams develop and upgrades come, things will change.”
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