0,8 seconds, Max missed the Melbourne qualifying for the pole-time of Lewis Hamilton, and in the race he was finally 22,5 seconds behind the winner Valtteri Bottas. Unlike Mercedes, Ferrari was only in qualifying before Red Bull. Many now see Red Bull as the third force in formula 1 2019. But Helmut Marko believes that this can change quickly.
We are of the opinion and hope that we can win by our own power,”says the Red Bull Motorsport Advisor in an interview with”Motorsport-Total.com”.”We are of the opinion and hope that we can win by our own efforts.” In Melbourne, we had a run-in with the vote and then had to gear up drastically to what we started in our first training. Otherwise, I think a third starting position would also have been possible.”
So not only Ferrari but also Red Bull would have been underestimated. Marko estimates the picture as a whole “similar to last year”. But: “We have certainly come closer. For the first time, we have a quality fashion that significantly changes life. The middle field is also closer. I just assume they can’t keep up with the pace of development that the three of us are going to bring forward. And so the top is actually three.”
Only the order is changed. Marko had seen Ferrari in front of Red Bull and Mercedes after the Barcelona test. In Melbourne, the exact opposite was true: Mercedes in front of Red Bull and Ferrari. Based on the data supplied by Barcelona, we were behind Ferrari and Mercedes after the winter tests, Marko defends himself and points out that the radical Mercedes update of the second test week “worked great.”
“Melbourne effect”: In Bahrain everything else?
He also believes, Melbourne may not be the whole truth: “Maybe Mercedes himself doesn’t know why they were so far ahead. Let’s call it the Melbourne effect,”Marko says. The track temperature was between 40 and 44 degrees. That’s fifteen degrees more than Barcelona. I think we will only see the exact ratio of forces on the upcoming racetracks, which have more impact, such as Bahrain and China.”
Red Bull still has”a construction site”on the chassis and is therefore quite capable of upgrading:”This is also due to the fact that we never drove in Barcelona with the full package, Because Gasly destroyed essential parts t hat we only had individually. So we got annoyed and we went too far in the hard direction with the set-up.”
“You could see this well in the third training session when you understand. From curve 3 to 4, the wheels went crazy, he drew black lines there. It was like a rally cross car. And we’re nowhere near the optimum of what the chassis can do. But this is nothing that cannot be fixed within a short or short time.”
cooling problems with Ferrari?
Marko hopes for two factors. First of all, the more data the team collects, the fewer the squandered last test days in Barcelona will weigh in comparison to the competition. Bahrain should be lighter than Melbourne. Second, even mini-updates could help to better develop the undoubtedly existing RB15 potential.
One disadvantage could be that almost all experts assume that Ferrari will be much stronger in Bahrain than in Australia. Although Marko believes the Italians have a problem with the engine cooling. What in turn would suggest that Mercedes and Red Bull could be advantageous again in the desert heat.
For Red Bull, overheating in the first season race was not an issue: “We have no problem at all with temperature, but this is related to aerodynamics”, Marko says and adds: “As far as we have seen, Mercedes did not have such problems either.”