Are we seeing the world champion car of the 2023 Formula 1 season here? Red Bull was the first team to present its new vehicle for the coming season in New York on Friday. And with the RB19 there is only one goal for the Bulls: to defend both world titles of the 2023 season.
The presentation was accompanied by reports about the entry of the Ford brand, which will become the new engine partner of Red Bull and AlphaTauri from 2026. There was already a confirmation on Friday afternoon. But that will only be acute in three years, the present is called 2023 RB19.
Max Verstappen goes into the new Formula 1 year as the defending champion and should be the man to beat. Because the 2022 season went almost perfectly from the point of view of the now two-time world champion. The Dutchman finally closed the sack in Japan and set a new Formula 1 record with 15 victories this season.
After the tight World Cup in 2021, the past year was much more relaxed for Verstappen. Will he face more competition this year?
At least that’s what his teammate Sergio Perez wants to offer, who missed the runner-up championship by three points against Charles Leclerc in 2022. The Mexican had started the season well, but as the year progressed he found himself struggling to keep up with Verstappen and had to settle for two wins of the season – including the prestigious Monaco race.
Can he keep up the pressure on Verstappen for a whole year this time? At least internally, there seemed to be pressure at the end of last season when Verstappen didn’t want to voluntarily let his team-mate in Brazil pass – and according to his own statement had reasons for it. Have the waves calmed down over the winter?
At least Red Bull seems to have all the ingredients for success again for 2023. The RB18 provides a good foundation and the framework of key staff around team boss Christian Horner and design guru Adrian Newey is still in place – although some staff like Dan Fallows were poached from Aston Martin some time ago.
The RB19 is once again officially powered by engines from Red Bull Powertrains. However, the internal engine department continues to use Honda engines, which are frozen under the current regulations.
A small disadvantage, however, is that Red Bull has had the least development time of all teams since the summer. Because you became a master constructor, the team is allowed to develop less than the competition at least until the end of June.
The budget limit, which according to the FIA was exceeded by 1.6 percent in 2021, also caused unrest. Red Bull had explained this with costs for spare parts and catering as well as severance pay and continued wages for sick employees, but still had to pay seven million dollars and was deducted a further ten percent of development time for twelve months.
Nevertheless, Red Bull can be trusted to continue riding the wave of success in 2023. The self-confidence that the racing team and Max Verstappen have is too high – and of course they also have the skills to make the best of the conditions.
Whether the RB19 will be as successful as its predecessor remains to be seen. But three world titles in a row would be an announcement.
This article was written by Norman Fischer
The original of this post “This is what Verstappen’s new Red Bull RB19 looks like in Formula 1” comes from Motorsport-Total.com.