Date: 19th May 2014 at 9:11am
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Red Bull Racing are in catch-up mode and have been all year.

They’ve been on the back foot ever since winter testing began in Jerez, Spain.

Problems with the new hybrid engine from Renault, plus Red Bull’s own packaging problems which caused over heating saw them slip behind most teams in terms of mileage completed during winter testing.

Whilst Mercedes had completed 1,323km in Spain, Red Bull had completed just 90km. The least mileage run by any team in attendance at the test [Lotus did not run].

At this stage, the other Renault powered teams had also struggled, sister team Toro Rosso for example had only completed 140km more, whilst Caterham achieved a further 94km.

But after the second winter test, the first in Bahrain, the other Renault powered teams began to get an improved idea of their car, while Red Bull continued to struggle.

Caterham completed 1,295km, Toro Rosso 712km, Lotus 568km, while Red Bull ran a slightly improved 594km.

But once again in comparison to Mercedes, they were all lagging behind with the German manufacturer running 1,613km and that wasn’t even the furthest distance run with Williams Mercedes completing 1,654km.

Red Bull Racing had hoped for more from their car from the third and final winter test in Bahrain, however it still wouldn’t come good for Red Bull with a further 937km completed.

Overall that left Red Bull Racing with an overall test mileage total of of 1,621km.

It was clear that with Mercedes completing 4,732km that Red Bull were going to struggle during the opening part of the season.

However, once the season got under way in Australia, Red Bull appeared to have ironed out a lot of the problems from their end.

That recovery has left Red Bull Racing pointing the finger of blame at engine manufacturer Renault for their poor start.

‘It’s quite simple really: we’ve had a massive engine regulation change and Renault have turned up and they weren’t as ready as some of their competitors were,’ Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner told Sky Sports.

‘We’ve been playing catch-up. They’re working tremendously hard at it and we’re slowly closing that gap down.

‘As you can see we’ve got a very good chassis, I just think that they started too late. It’s as simple as that.’


Formula One switched from aspirated V8 engines to V6 hybrid turbo engines for the start of the 2014 season.

The engine regulation switch was previously announced in 2011, with Renault one of the pioneers for the change.

Horner concluded: ‘[Renault] were the guys who pushed very hard for this regulation change, so one would have thought that they’d have been the most prepared for it.

‘The guys are having to recover lost ground and they’ve got a recovery plan, they’re working to that, they’re trying to close that gap.