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Herbert: Red Bull RB20 no surprise, it’s a well calculated risk

verstappen rb20 bahrain f1 Herbert: Red Bull RB20 not a surprise, is it a risk?

Johnny Herbert was not surprised by the aggressive route taken by Red Bull with the RB20 2024 Formula 1 car and believes it is a well-calculated risk that is likely to have their rivals chasing them all season, again.

Last year’s Red Bull RB19 won all but one of the 22 Grand Prix races last season, hence many believed Adrian Newey and his design team would evolve the concept that most of the other nine teams copied.

Instead, they have taken Mercedes ‘zero-sidepod’ package (that flopped for the German team) and given it their interpretation. And all indications on day one of F1 testing in Bahrain are that the RB20 and Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez have a special piece of kit for 2024.

Ahead of Bahrain F1 Testing, during a roundtable chat with journos including (GRANDPRIX247 ) and hosted by Grosvenor Sport, Herbert was asked if it was a brave call to go aggressive with the new Red Bull: “You can use the word brave. But there is always a mentality with the aerodynamicist designers and everyone else involved to improve the car.

“But actually, you can test it within the restrictions that all these teams had wind tunnels, simulators, CFD and all that stuff, then if there is an improvement, of course, you’re gonna give it a shot. And I think sometimes you’re able to implement some of those design features that are on another car and come away with a benefit.

Herbert continued: “It’s not a surprise, is it a risk? I know Sergio Perez said it’s a fairly drastic change. But I think as we’ve known down the line, sometimes it could be potentially a benefit for them. But of course, it’s how the whole concept comes together with what Red Bull have at the moment.”

Johnny: That’s what they always do copy, copy

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“The biggest test to be is what the others bring,” continued Herbert. “And what performance-wise they have. Why would you copy a Mercedes? Yes, because the Mercedes wasn’t very competitive. But there are going to be elements and all those cars that probably are better than what you’ve got on your car.

“And it’s just being clever enough to put all those pieces together on your on your particular design, and then make it work. That’s what they always do. copy, copy.

‘That’s where these guys, Adrian and his team are very, very clever, and have been able to work out what elements of someone else’s design, See where there is potential performance that they can take on board. So why not?

“Why not go for something slightly different if they stuck with what they had last year? I think they’d could be in trouble because obviously, we think everybody else is going to improve so you don’t stick with what you’ve got you try.” reckoned Herbert.

The 59-year-old, three-time Grand Prix winner, is wary of Red Bull potential to win like they did last year. He predicts: “It’s down to what Adrian comes out with if he can find something that the others haven’t thought about. It’s something he’s done many many times before.”

Although it’s early days, after day one of 2024 F1 testing it could be that Newey has done it again with the Red Bull RB20 as it topped the season’s first sessions, albeit testing. Nevertheless, this will make Verstappen and Perez the happiest drivers ahead of the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix weekend, and have everyone else worried very worried.

Big Question: Is the Red Bull RB20 a risk worth taking?