Red Bull team prncipal Christian Horner has said that driver, engine and staff continuity is crucial to Red Bull’s charge for the championship this year.
The team is the only one to keep both its drivers for 2010: Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber. The engine will continue to be supplied from Renault, and there are few changes at the staff.
Speaking at the AUTOSPORT International show, he said:
“So we are probably one of the only big teams that has not had a change, and there is always that settling down period, especially with the restricted testing, that drivers who change teams or new drivers coming into teams are going to be under pressure to get up to speed quickly.”
“We have the benefit of continuity, but obviously the other teams are quality teams and world class drivers and I am sure by the time we arrive in Bahrain they will all be in good shape. “
Horner is adamant that the decision to skip the first test session, to give them more development time, will not be a disadvantage.
“Strategically it is something that we looked at, and it is something that you look at when you look at the planning of the car,” he said. “It was something we elected to do in 2009, to give the designers, Adrian [Newey] and his team as much time as possible, to optimise the launch car.”
“Last year it poured with rain for three days at Parc Algarve, and we don’t have good enough weather satellites to say it is going to do the same in Valencia. But it is a strategy we have adopted.”
“We believe it gives us the best preparation for the first race in Bahrain, and the season ahead. It is a long campaign, 19 races this year, so rightly or wrongly that is our decision. It is an aggressive route to take. It has always been part of our strategy and we will hit the ground running at the second test in Jerez.”
Speaking about the team’s decicion to keep Renault engines for this year, he said:
“I don’t think the engine decision made any difference at all to our planning. There was obviously some discussions with Mercedes-Benz during the latter part of the summer, but as soon as it was clear what our engine choice was going to be, it hasn’t compromised anything in any way.”
A video of the full interview is available here: