Horner reveals if Red Bull will bring a ‘big’ upgrade package to Imola

Ferrari have already confirmed that they will not be bringing anything major to the 2022 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has warned that his team will have “very little time” to test any new parts that they might bring to the 2022 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

The race in Imola this weekend is Formula 1’s first voyage into Europe this season, meaning that it is about the time the teams will be starting to implement changes to their cars.

These changes are more prominent than ever this year due to the rapid evolution of the cars thanks to the new technical regulations that have shaken up the aerodynamic philosophy and, subsequently, the pecking order.

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Red Bull have claimed a race win through Max Verstappen thus far in the 2022 season in Saudi Arabia, but he has failed to finish the other two grand prix in Bahrain and Australia due to reliability issues.

As such, he suggested that it is more prudent for his team to focus on the ability to “finish races,” but the performance deficit to Ferrari in Melbourne will have been a galvanising factor for the Milton Keynes side.

So we may well be seeing some performance upgrades from them this weekend, but Horner is aware, much like his Ferrari counterpart Mattia Binotto, that the sole practice session before Friday qualifying due to the sprint event will make it tough to introduce significant changes.

“I wouldn’t say we’re bringing a big package,” he said, as quoted by RacingNews365.com. 

“It’s all part of evolution, but of course it’s a sprint race. You get very little time to evaluate things like this (upgrades). 

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“You only have one session before qualifying, so we have to be very confident about what we’re trying out.”

The plan, therefore, is to continue to garner a greater comprehension of the car this weekend and over the coming races to decipher exactly what upgrades the team should prioritise.

“As we gradually learn more about the tyres and performance of the cars, we will see the direction of development. After the first few races of the season that will be much clearer, so we can follow the ‘common thread’ for the rest of the season,” he explained.

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This patient and intellectual approach to determining the upgrade plan has almost certainly partly derived from the necessity to ensure that upgrades remain within the confines of the $140 million budget the teams are working on this season.

FIA head of technical matters, Nikolas Tombazis, has recently warned the teams that the governing body has “tax experts” on hand to ensure that financial compliance is maintained.