Cyril Abiteboul claims Red Bull “missed a trick” as he gives harsh feedback
Tensions have been high between Red Bull and Renault in recent years, as was evident in an interview with the French team’s chief Cyril Abiteboul.
Red Bull’s success plateau
Red Bull’s cars were powered by Renault engines for the majority of the team’s existence, from 2007-2018, allowing them to take four consecutive Drivers’ and Constructors’ Championships (2010-2013). However, now in their second season with Honda power units, Red Bull are not challenging for those titles like they used to.
Photo credit: Red Bull
When asked why he thought this was, Cyril Abiteboul replied with a laugh, “how harsh do you want me to be in that answer?”
“I think Red Bull are a fantastic team but, in my opinion, Red Bull have missed a trick of modern F1 where you can’t have the chassis organization and the engine organisation… so distinct… if you want to fight for wins in a consistent manner.
“And so probably the struggle that they face at the start of the season, but more during the course of the season, is a demonstration of that. You really need to be one group of people, one team, with one mindset. And we have failed to do that altogether.
“It looks like they are not able to do that much better with Honda. But it just shows the level of complexity and perfection that is required to win in Formula 1 and, in particular, to beat Mercedes,” said Abiteboul
Third party opinion
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff was in agreement with Abiteboul, explaining that Red Bull have everything they need at their fingertips to effectively challenge his own dominant drivers.
Photo credit: Mercedes
“Red Bull have all the resources, human resources and financial resources, to compete at the very front,” he said. “They had those great years with Renault, starting in 2010 with four consecutive championships.
“As Cyril said, it’s about putting all things together, every parameter is needed in order to get there and that is not only the engine and chassis relationship that needs to be strong but it’s also about putting all components, all these marginal gains together, in order to perform.”
Can Red Bull return to the front?
Though it is true that Red Bull have not won a Championship since 2013 and have struggled in the turbo-hybrid era, this season is shaping up to be marginally more successful than prior years; if they are able to maintain this upward trajectory, they might just be able to bring a Championship fight to the table once again.