The world likes geniuses. They can easily outrun the extraordinary and make the ‘good’ and ‘brilliant’ seem mediocre. But when you place the striking phrase that concerns itself with rich bouquets of excellence in the F1 world, you tend to bump into figures such as the great Adrian Newey.
Where might the Red Bull racing team be without Verstappen, it is asked? But quite frankly, the big question is – where might the Milton Keynes-bound team be in the absence of a genius like Newey?
Truth be told, the very man who had, back in the day, designed the fantastic and winning machine for Sebastian Vettel is now doing the same for a certain Max Verstappen.
That Max Verstappen is going to win the world title isn’t a question of if, but when. It’s that certain. And quite frankly, given the menacing pace of the Red Bull 2023 machine, that has won Max thirteen races and his teammate, Perez, two, Red Bull find themselves having lost just a solitary race, whilst having won fifteen.
That’s quite a number.
Which is why it just makes absolute sense when the man bordering reclusiveness and quaintness, Adrian Newey, reflects on the car and the positives that have together made the RB 19 a giant killer of sorts.
Having said that, what did Newey say?
“This has been our biggest run of success that I’ve certainly ever experienced. I’ve been fortunate enough to have been involved in cars that have been dominant in the past, but we’ve never had this level of consistency. People might think it now that everything is kind of guaranteed and it’ll be smooth. The reality is, so many things can go wrong in a race.
Actually getting two cars to the finish, preferably both of them near the front week after week, it’s a difficult challenge because of all the elements that can go wrong: reliability, accidents, strategy, performance obviously. So, to achieve this, I think, is a real tribute to everybody.”
Red Bull haven’t really put a foot wrong- have they?
Having said the above, the following is what Adrian Newey had to say about what may have added to the RB 19’s overall strength in a season where the team has honestly, not put a foot wrong:
Even with all the tools we have now, there still has to be a degree of gut [instinct]. The reality is, even before the cost cap, we were still resource and people limited. We have never had the capacity to research endless different paths in great detail. If you take a recent example, obviously with last year’s car we took an aerodynamic direction with the sidepod and design and the concept of the car, which was almost polar opposite to what Mercedes did.”
That being told, what does Adrian Newey feel about the Mercedes team, a unit that fought fire to fire with the Red Bull F1 side in the 2021 season, though falling quite way behind the blazing speed of the Milton Keynes outfit the following year?
“Mercedes showed flashes of competitiveness last year. They obviously won in Brazil. Then you’re faced with a choice of ‘Do we start to research Mercedes in case we’ve missed something or do we stick with what we’re going?’ Gut feeling was stick with what we’re doing.”
With just a handful of races remaining up ahead and Max Verstappen having utterly dominated the season with an iron-fist of sorts, it really remains to be seen as to how some other team that isn’t Red Bull wins the remaining races.
What do you reckon?