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Horner stresses respect Verstappen and Perez: 'I expect that to continue'

Horner stresses respect Verstappen and Perez: 'I expect that to continue'

24 March - 20:06

Red Bull Racing, unlike a year earlier, made a dream start to the 2023 Formula 1 season. Christian Horner does not expect his team to show such dominant pace at every race, but is confident his team can get even more out of the RB19.

That the RB19 is a resounding success is clear from Toto Wolff's words. Not only did the Mercedes team boss finally admit that the current concept will not help Lewis Hamilton and George Russell win the world title, he also hinted that his team is indeed considering adopting Adrian Newey's design. In particular, the W14's sidepods are subject to change.

Horner on 'Red Bull copy' Mercedes

Is imitation the highest form of flattery? "Absolutely," replies the Red Bull team boss as Sky News confronts him about Mercedes' alleged plans. To what extent the W14 will take the forms of its Austrian rival remains to be seen. However, Horner does expect F1 teams to move closer together over time, even before the end of the current season.

The pace of both Red Bulls is murderous at the moment, but Horner is not worried that the current dominance will put off the average F1 viewer. "I think we saw a great race again at the weekend between our two drivers and if you do have two dominant cars, if those two cars are racing each other, then I think that does create a spectacle in itself," he judges.

Respect between Verstappen and Perez

Meanwhile, there is plenty of talk about whether or not the bond between Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez has cooled, but Horner says there is no such thing. He also stressed that neither driver gets preferential treatment at this stage of the championship. "I think for us as a team, the responsibility is to give both drivers the same chance, the same opportunity, the same car," Horner continued.

"And of course, it's then down to what they do on the, on the circuit, we've got two great drivers, you know, Max and, and, and Sergio, there's a, a healthy respect between the two of them and, I expect that to continue," he adds.

At the same time, the 49-year-old Briton has no doubt that the competition will manage to close the gap over the course of the season. "I have no doubt that the opposition are going to be coming back quickly and aggressively, especially as we come back into the Europe season where updates start to come through. We're hearing about big Mercedes upgrades and I'm sure Ferrari aren't happy with their current position as well," Horner said.

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