SUZUKA, Japan, Oct 8 (Reuters) - Red Bull’s dominant display in Japan at the weekend is down to a range of things and not just a new aerodynamic device giving more speed on the straight, according to team principal Christian Horner.
Formula One champion Sebastian Vettel has won the last two races in Singapore and at Suzuka, an improvement that coincides with the deployment of a new ‘Double DRS’ system on the rear wing.
“As with all these things, there’s never a silver bullet and I think it would be very difficult to say the car’s performance here is purely down to a rear wing,” Horner told reporters after a race that saw Vettel move to four points behind Ferrari’s championship leader Fernando Alonso.
“I think we’ve made progress in all areas and it’s about chipping away at the detail.”
Horner pointed to the fact that champions Red Bull could claim the fastest pitstop of the race, with Vettel’s timed at 2.6 seconds but the team reckoning it was a shade faster.
“That is just pushing in all the areas so I think it would be wrong to say that our upturn in performance is purely down to finding a few kilometres an hour on the straight,” said the principal.
Red Bull had tried out the system in Singapore, where McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton took pole but retired while leading due to a gearbox failure.
Vettel took pole, fastest lap and the win at Suzuka with his rivals trailing far behind. However, he had also been on pole there in the three previous years and won twice.
The new Red Bull system, which seems less problematic than ones tried out by Mercedes and Lotus, should give a particular boost in qualifying.
Lotus are still trying to get their ‘device’ to work properly and abandoned plans to run it in both the last two races.
”Today in the race I wasn’t really using DRS so it didn’t really matter,“ Vettel said in the post-race news conference after leading from pole to flag. ”I think we’ve made improvements over the last couple of races.
“Qualifying was a bit our weakness and has seemed a little bit better in the last races.” (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Mark Meadows)