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F1 wind tunnel punishment helped ‘focus minds’

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The Milton Keynes-based outfit has emerged from the winter because the staff to beat, with its 2023 F1 challenger proving to be a step away from its foremost opposition within the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix. 

Its spectacular progress comes regardless of Pink Bull having been handed an additional 10% discount in its allotted wind tunnel and CFD time as the results of over-spending on its method to the 2021 world championship. 

Whereas the staff had claimed that the sanction can be a giant handicap in its hopes of discovering enhancements for its RB19, it has really managed to provide a automotive that appears additional in entrance than even final yr’s RB18. 

Horner reckons that one of many upsides of being hit with the penalty was that it ensured the staff sharpened its strategy in managing wind tunnel time higher.

“I feel it focuses all people’s minds, and it drives effectivity,” he stated, when requested by Autosport in regards to the influence of the punishment on the mindset of staff employees. “What we misplaced in wind tunnel time we gained in motivation.”

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Whereas Pink Bull has appeared to undergo little from the discount in aero growth time to date, Horner nonetheless believes there could possibly be long run penalties from it. 

“It’s one thing it’s important to view over 12 months, as a result of it isn’t simply this yr’s automotive, it’s also subsequent yr’s automotive,” he defined. 

“I feel the actually Positive factor for us is that we aren’t coping with a elementary problem that soaks up that useful resource and time.  

“It was very important for us to have the ability to address that penalty and to have a stable start line. That’s what the staff has accomplished an ideal job in attaining.” 

Christian Horner, Workforce Principal, Pink Bull Racing

Photograph by: Pink Bull Content material Pool

Horner added that the results of the penalty should dangle over the staff for the following 9 months – and it’s one thing that would but catch it out in a while. 

“We’ve one other eight, 9 months nonetheless to go along with it,” he stated. “It signifies that we will should be very selective and intensely environment friendly in how we develop this automotive and, in fact, subsequent yr’s automotive.” 

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Horner believed the dearth of wind tunnel growth might show particularly problematic if there may be any important change to the 2024 automotive laws that might require some additional work. 

“It actually relies upon if something modifications within the laws,” he stated.

“We’re anticipating steady laws however, in fact it’s a drawback, a handicap, to haven’t solely the incremental distinction that you’ve got by being in first place within the championship, and on prime of {that a} additional 10%. 

“So we’re 15% much less time than [Ferrari] and 20% lower than Mercedes and so forth. That is a big quantity. So for us it is all about being environment friendly and being efficient in what we apply and select to check within the tunnel, and the way we develop each the RB19 and the RB20 automotive.” 

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