Christian Horner makes admission about 2022 season as Max Verstappen braced for second title

Red Bull and Max Verstappen have dominated the 2022 campaign.

Red Bull team principal, Christian Horner, is delighted with the efforts of his team over the winter to build such a successful package for 2022.

The Milton Keynes-based team won four world titles in a row through Sebastian Vettel between 2010 and 2013, with Mark Webber helping them to the Constructors’ Championship in all of those seasons.

Their dominance ended with the arrival of the new technical regulations and the return of ground effect aerodynamics though, and Mercedes won seven drivers’ titles in a row.

Sir Lewis Hamilton won six of them, with Nico Rosberg claiming the other in 2016 and, after the German retired following his title victory, Valtteri Bottas would go on to add to the collection of gold.

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The Finn, along with Hamilton, guided the Silver Arrows to five consecutive teams’ titles, but 2021 would see Max Verstappen interrupt the status quo in the pinnacle of motorsport by claiming his maiden title.

The Dutchman prevailed in dramatic fashion in Abu Dhabi followed 22 incredible rounds up against Hamilton, and the second world title now looks just around the corner.

Verstappen has won 11 this year, already beating his tally from last season, and there are still six rounds to go of the 2022 campaign.

He and Sergio Perez are also inching closer to the Austrian side’s fifth constructors’ crown, so there are plenty more celebrations to be had for Horner’s team this year.

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As a result, the 48-year-old reckons that this may be the best season he has ever presided over since Red Bull’s F1 debut in 2005.

“I would say so,” Horner told the Beyond the Grid Podcast.

“In 2021, we were operating at an incredible level and we finally got a sniff of putting a challenge together for a world championship and that was a 22-race championship bout, a heavyweight fight from race one to race 22. 

“What has been particularly pleasing about this year is despite colossal regulation changes we had to undergo coming into this year -and we honestly thought we had compromised this year by putting everything we had into last year – the team came up with an amazing car, a super car.

“Max has made another step, Checo has felt more part of the team this year with a lot more familiarity.

“To be sitting here having won 12 grands prix, and with 16 podiums so far has been an incredible season for us.”

While Red Bull came out of their bruising title battle with Mercedes on the front foot, the same could not be said of the German team, who are yet to win a race this season.

After putting so much energy into last year’s pursuit of the title, Horner is elated with the way his team have been able to conquer the new era.

“We were probably the last team to transition onto the ’22 regulations,” he added.

“We went quite late on development through ’21 because when you have a sniff of a championship, we would have kicked ourselves if we hadn’t done everything you possibly could, which meant compromising ’22.

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“But the team in Milton Keynes, whilst we were away fighting for the championship, did an incredible job over the winter to come up with the RB18 which has been potentially our most successful car ever.

“From the first race, we were right there, so [it is] tremendously rewarding for the whole team.”

Verstappen is on course to smash the records for the most wins in a single season, as well as the most consecutive wins by a single driver.