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Vasseur: Red Bull did a good job, but their penalty was very light

Vasseur: Red Bull did a good job, but their penalty was very light

Vasseur: Red Bull did a good job, but their penalty was very light
Frederic Vasseur, Ferrari’s Team Principal, acknowledged that Red Bull have done a good job with their RB19 in 2023, but insisted their cost cap penalty was very light.

Back in 2022, Red Bull were found to have violated the Formula 1 budget cap for the 2021 season, a subject that caused much controversy at the time and resulted in them getting a $7-Million fine with their aero development time slashed by 10%.

However Red Bull hit the ground running in 2023 with an impressive RB19, another one of Adrian Newey’s F1 creations, their penalty seemingly without any effect.

And that is the conviction of Ferrari boss Fred Vasseur who, when asked of Red Bull’s 2023 form was down to them doing a good job or to a lenient penalty, said: “Both!

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“They did a good job. And still I am convinced that the penalty was very light,” he insisted.

“If you consider the rate of development that we have during the season, if you consider the fact that if you have a 10% balance at the end, it’s not something linear, you are also putting the performance.

Vasseur insists he’s not making excuses

“Then you can spend what you are saving on the wind tunnel, you can spend it somewhere else on the weight saving and so on. I’m not sure that the effect is mega. And if you consider that you have an advantage at the beginning of the season because you spent more the year before…

“I don’t want to say that they didn’t do a good job, because I think honestly that they did a very good job on the car. So, I am not trying to find an excuse at all. It’s not this. But if you ask me if the penalty is too light, I say yes,” the Frenchman maintained.

One of the strengths of Red Bull’s RB19 this year is their straight line speed, as their DRS has a bigger effect than other cars.

“They have a mega big DRS effect, bigger than everybody else,” Vasseur pointed out. “We have to understand how they’re able to do something like this.

“I think it was probably even more obvious last year, but we compensated part of the gap. But we have still to improve on this,” he added.

While Red Bull have improved, Ferrari have gone backwards, and they don’t have a penalties to hinder them, as their SF-23 still suffers from the chronic tyre degradation issues they had in 2022, while reliability, another weakness for the Scuderia last season doesn’t seem to have improved.