Red Bull RB19: “No big concern” for upcoming technical directive

Even Ferrari at their best could not defeat Red Bull in Monza, who went on to claim their 14th win of 2023 – whilst Max Verstappen secured ten in a row. On the Italian circuit, the RB19 was again superior in pace and tyre conservation. “It’s extraordinary, a historic achievement,” – said Red Bull team principal Christian Horner.

“We have won all the races so far. I would never have imagined it at the beginning of the year.”

Three-tenths separated Red Bull and Ferrari

Was the RB19 less dominant than usual in Monza? No. The Milton Keynes team clearly expressed greater potential in the race than the Maranello outfit.

Saturday is a very different dynamic compared to race day. We have seen narrow gaps in qualifying throughout the season, only for Red Bull to dominate in the race.

The “difficulties” for the Austrian team only occurred in overtaking the fast SF-23s, despite the wake and DRS. 

The difference in pace between Red Bull and Ferrari has never been so close. On average, the gap was around three-tenths per lap.

Verstappen’s overtake on Sainz came after the Dutchman forced the Ferrari driver to lock up. Verstappen capitalised on Red Bull’s superior traction to eventually make the overtake.

“It wasn’t easy to attack the Ferraris in Turn 1. Luckily, Carlos made a small mistake. I knew I had to be patient and wait for the right moment.”

Red Bull compromised on DRS to protect the rears

Ferrari’s Monza spec rear wing complicated life for the Red Bull duo when overtaking. Unlike their Italian counterparts, Red Bull saw no significant drop-off in tyre lap.

At the end of the two stints, Ferrari had a significant tendency to slide at the rear, which made it more susceptible to attack under traction. 

The effect of Red Bull’s ultra-effective DRS was reduced to a minimum. The wing used by Ferrari, meanwhile, was the same specification from 2023 – giving the Scuderia more top speed.

Red Bull pursued a more loaded compromise, opting for a cut mobile flap, which partly sacrificed efficiency with active DRS. A less “specific” solution for the temple of speed than what Ferrari used.

The rear wing of the RB19 in Monza with the mobile flap cut off – Illustration Rosario Giuliana

“The simulation data proved us right about the choice of the rear wing, above all to be more effective on the road and on the tyres” – race winner Max Verstappen explained.

The warm temperatures favoured Red Bullover Ferrari in relation to tyre management.

“At the end, Max was forced to lift his foot as a precaution because the temperatures were rising too much,” reported Helmut Marko post-race.

Red Bull unconcerned by upcoming Technical Directive

It is increasingly difficult to see where Red Bull can be defeated in 2023, outside of mechanical failure. The RB19 shows few – if any – weaknesses.

The last part of the season will take place mostly in Asia and partly in America.

Most tracks will require medium-high load, with the RB19 and Max Verstappen still able to wreak havoc. If everything goes as it should, the RB19 clearly has everything necessary to continue its winning streak. Still, it should be noted Verstappen has never won in Singapore.

Together with Alpine, Red Bull stayed in Monza for two days together with Pirelli to exclusively test their dry compounds.

At the same time, Ferrari will be busy with the SF-23 for tests with wet and intermediate tyres on the Fiorano track.

These tests will be especially important as Pirelli looks to eliminate the need for tyre blankets. After a weekend break, F1 will return to Singapore, on the Marina Bay circuit with a revised layout. 

It is likely that Pierre Waché technical team will bring its final update package to the RB19. The Red Bull factory has already been exclusively focused on the 2024 cars for several weeks now.

The new Red Bull RB19 cooling inlets introduced in Hungary – Illustration Rosario Giuliana

However, it will be a “minor update” after Hungary’s large package, which included modified sidepods.

In Singapore, technical directive 18 will be implemented to place further restrictions on the use of flexible aerodynamic surfaces.

This is a true obsession for the FIA ​​technicians, who have worked to stop this phenomenon since 2021.

“From this point of view, there is no big concern,” says Red Bull. The directive should not have an impact on the technical advantage that the Milton Keynes car has over its rivals. No major upheavals are expected at Mercedes, either.

Author: Rosario Giuliana

Co-Authors: Piergiuseppe Donadoni , Andrea Vergani

Translation: Jaden Diaz-Ndisang