With stable technical regulations the car is an evolution of its highly successful predecessors. Technical Director Adrian Newey discussed how the all new Pirelli tyres were the biggest factor in the development of the new car:
“There were no big regulation changes over the winter,” said the designer. “The most significant change is not the regulations, it’s the new Pirelli tyres. We had a quick test in P1 in Brazil but it was very hot and on a green track and in truth we didn’t learn a lot.”
“It’s an evolutionary car,” said Newey during the launch of Red Bull’s ninth Formula 1 single-seater. It’s really been a case of refining the RB8. There are no huge changes. It’s very much an evolutionary car.
“All the principles the same as last year. The devil has very much been in the detail with this car. We’ve tidied up some bits that we felt could be improved on. Development is now the key through the year.”
Red Bull struggled at times in 2012 with their development paths and it was only their Singapore upgrade that truly allowed Vettel to challenge for victories and eventually retain his title. The German, the youngest ever triple world champion, is looking towards forward to his next challenge; trying to win a fourth crown:
“It’s obviously one thing to look back on what we have achieved as a team, but I feel it all starts again from zero,” said Vettel. “It will be a long year again, a very tough challenge waiting for all of us. I’m looking forward to that and not thinking about what happened in the last year. People expect something of us, but more than that we expect ourselves to do well.”
Webber is about to embark on his seventh season with the team and over the winter the Australian has come under fire from Helmet Marko for his inability to match Vettel’s consistency. He has however played a key role in allowing the team to win the last three Constructors’ Championships through his consistent points scoring finish and many podiums.
For Webber the continuity that comes from being at a team for seven years is clearly important. The nine times Grand Prix was in good spirits ahead of the new season and was keen to stress just how enjoyable his time with the team has been.
“The fact that this is my seventh season with the team is a massive advantage,” said Webber. “I couldn’t have envisaged it when I joined and it’s hard to believe that you could be with the same Formula One team for seven years, as continuity is not always easy to achieve in this sport. I think the way we keep people excited and motivated here is important. It’s quite a small operation, but obviously we’re big on ambition and desire and that makes us perform very well. I’ve really enjoyed the years I’ve had here so far and I can’t wait to get going this season.”