Red Bull Racing looks set to change its pre-season philosophy on the back of some disappointing season starts in recents years. Dr. Helmut Marko, involved with Red Bull even before the company entered the fray as a team owner, said the team aims for a different approach to winter testing in the hope of enjoying better performance early in the season.
"We noticed the trend that we earn more points in the second half of the season," he told Servus TV.
"For many years the philosophy of Adrian Newey was to present the car as late as possible, but for next year we have changed the approach. Now we are ahead of schedule by two weeks compared to last year," Marko revealed.
"If the engine is reliable, we will be able to fight in the leading group already from the first race of the season."
The Austrian company has traditionally opted to maximize the development time of its new cars each winter by being one of the last teams to complete its design. This ambitious approach can give in theory an extra performance boost because the technical team can gain additional wind tunnel time.
However, this can compromise the preparation work for the season as the shorter run-up to the season leaves less time to iron out the teething issues during and after the winter tests.
The team’s young talent, Max Verstappen indicated earlier that his squad would need to rethink its approach in launching its contender so late.
“I think just some different things in procedures, maybe not so late with the car in terms of bringing it out. That is for the team to really work on, that is not my decision."
“Maybe just stop it a bit earlier at that time, the development, but then drive the car because you learn a lot in driving the car," Verstappen answered whether he felt Red Bull has been over-ambitious with the late timing.