Red Bull has multiple problems it needs to address if it is to remain in the fight with Ferrari and Mercedes in the 2022 F1 season, according to Dr. Helmut Marko.
Marko is a former F1 driver who is now an advisor to the Red Bull team while also being in charge of their impressive junior drivers' program.
The veteran Austrian highlighted the issues Christian Horner and Co. need to fix after Max Verstappen suffered his second DNF in three races this year.
During an interview with Servus TV, Marko admitted that Red Bull reportedly had a pace deficit of nearly three tenths per lap in comparison to Ferrari. He attributed this to the weight of the RB18, one of the heaviest cars on the 2022 F1 grid. Marko said:
“We are clearly heavier than the Ferrari. I think we have a weight handicap of about 10 kilograms. Converted to lap time, that equates to about three tenths per lap. But lowering the weight is expensive. It’s, to start with, a financial issue and secondly, it is also related to reliability, so it is a difficult split due to the budget ceiling. We are facing difficult times. We will indeed get an upgrade. If it functions as well as the first updates and if we can reduce the weight, we can put that package on a par with Ferrari. But more importantly, we solve the reliability problems. You can have a fast car but if you don’t get to the finish, it’s of no use.”
"They just controlled the pace and did that without graining" - Red Bull impressed by Ferrari's lack of tire degradation during Australian GP
Dr. Helmut Marko was impressed by the lack of tire degradation seen on the Ferrari F1-75 during the 2022 F1 Australian GP weekend. Both Red Bull drivers were far from happy with their tire degradation status during qualifying and the race in Melbourne.
In contrast, Ferrari looked anything but troubled with Charles Leclerc leading from lights to flag. The Monegasque even bagged the fastest lap on the hard tires to claim his first Grand Chelem.
Speaking in the aforementioned interview with Servus TV about the variables that Red Bull needs to work on, Marko said:
“There are two or maybe three different things at play. Firstly, the reliability problems, which we hardly had last year, but the lag behind Ferrari was also alarming today. They just controlled the pace and did that without graining. If Max stepped on, Leclerc could react easily. We were negatively surprised by the speed of Ferrari. They had almost no graining and we already had after a few laps. Ferrari can find a good balance with the car more easily.”
The team from Milton-Keynes has time to find and implement fixes to its problems before the next race of the F1 season in Imola. The 2022 F1 Emilia Romagna GP weekend will be held between April 22 and April 24.
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