Marko: Red Bull has reason to believe in 2020 title challenge
Helmut Marko says Red Bull's 2020 Formula 1 hopes will be boosted by what it learned from mistakes this year, as it especially won’t be as late with its car again.
While the Milton Keynes-based outfit always knew that 2019 would be a transition year on the back of its switch to Honda, the team was also held back by early-season chassis headaches.
It took some time to get on top of the impact of front wing regulation changes for this year, and it was not until the Austrian Grand Prix that it was able to unlock the full potential of its car.
Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko says the team knows where it went wrong, which gives it some confidence for next season.
“We’ve learned from our mistakes and are, this time with justification, optimistic about being able to fight for the championship,” he told Motorsport.com about 2020.
“One mistake was that we were too late with the car. The first races we were not where we wanted to be. The goal is to be competitive from the first race next year.”
Marko famously declared before the start of the season that he wanted Red Bull-Honda to win five races this season – a target it is currently two short of.
Asked about that ambition, Marko replied: “We're not that far away. Budapest was very close. We were very fast in Monza but we had an accident there. Singapore was actually where we where weaker than expected. We didn’t find an optimum set-up there.
“In terms of pure speed we are moving in the right direction, but after the summer break we lost a bit of momentum. There were three accidents in the first corner for Verstappen.”
One aspect that Marko is especially bullish about for 2020 is Honda’s engine progress, with the Japanese manufacturer having improved greatly this season.
“They delivered what they had promised – [in fact] even more. In terms of reliability, we have had no problems at all and there wasn't a single real engine failure.
“We are more than satisfied with the cooperation. And what's in the pipeline for next year makes us confident.”
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