Horner denies that Red Bull’s car is being developed for Verstappen


Christian Horner has denied any suggestions that Red Bull’s car is being developed to suit Max Verstappen more than Sergio Perez.

In the earlier stages of the season, Perez looked to be slightly more comfortable with the RB18 than his teammate, particularly over the Monaco Grand Prix weekend, where the Mexican claimed victory while Verstappen finished third.

However, at recent races Verstappen has seemed to outperform Perez, and Perez has since been overtaken by Charles Leclerc in the World Championship standings, pushing the former down to third.

Horner: Developments not being driven in one direction

When asked about whether future development on Red Bull’s car may favour Verstappen more than Perez, Horner insisted that the direction would not lean towards one driver above another.

“I’m not sure that’s entirely correct,” Horner told media, including RacingNews365.com, after the Austrian Grand Prix.

“I think the set-up is crucial. I think that Checo was very competitive in the race at Silverstone, and I think that he’ll have races that we know that he’ll perform very well at.

“Certainly, the developments aren’t being driven in one direction, just an overall car performance improvement.”

Red Bull will work to understand Austria struggles

In terms of their weekend at the Austrian Grand Prix, one of the main issues affecting the RB18 was tyre degradation, which impacted Verstappen as he tried and failed to stay ahead of Leclerc in the race.

Horner admits that, after their stronger performance in Saturday’s Sprint, the team have work to do in trying to understand what went wrong on Sunday.

“[With the] degradation, when you look at the Sprint race, we pushed a bit harder at the beginning, paid a little bit at the end, but over the whole stint was – on our analysis – identical to that of Ferrari,” the team boss commented.

“The only thing that changed overnight is the rain. The temperature [changed] slightly and of course, the fuel load. We just need to understand why, in that first stint, our deg[radation] was significantly worse than Charles’ and Carlos [Sainz’s].”

With the main problem being “overall grip”, Horner added that there would be “plenty to go through” for the team in assessing what happened.

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