Red Bull accused of using ‘fake floor’

Max Verstappen enjoyed a near unstoppable run in 2023, with Sergio Perez trailing him after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Red Bull Racing was the last Formula 1 team to unveil their new car ahead of the 2024 season, but there’s a notable suspicion surrounding one aspect of the car that caught everyone’s attention.

Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez are eager for the RB20 to replicate the dominance of the RB19 from the previous year.

Speaking on the Autosport Podcast, journalist Alex Kalinauckas shared the initial impressions of journalists upon seeing the new car.

The commencement of the 2024 car launch season was overshadowed by the significant news of Lewis Hamilton’s departure from Mercedes to join Ferrari at the end of the season.

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The reverberations of this news will be felt for years to come, compelled by Red Bull’s dominance, which arguably forced Hamilton into one of the most drastic moves of his career.

The seven-time world champion has been unable to secure a victory since 2021, and Mercedes failed to clinch a single win last year.

Max Verstappen enjoyed a near unstoppable run in 2023, with Sergio Perez trailing him after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, and only Carlos Sainz interrupting Red Bull’s potential clean sweep.

Their challenge now is to surpass last year’s performance, leading us to the RB20.

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While many teams have drawn inspiration from their previous year’s car, Red Bull presented a model with significant deviations.

However, Kalinauckas suggests that the Red Bull launch car may have featured a component that was likely artificial.

They were hesitant to reveal all their secrets ahead of the Bahrain testing, which commenced on Wednesday.

Discussing the latest creation from Adrian Newey and his team, Kalinauckas remarked, “The car that everybody’s seen today is the launch spec car, it’s what the team start the season with.”

“It’s very much not got its real floor on it. I think the chatter amongst everybody gathered here was that very much a fake floor, it looked like it was absolutely solid.”

“I just can’t imagine they would waste the carbon fibre on it, but yeah don’t expect the team to be starting the season with that.”

We’ll have to wait until Red Bull hits the track in Bahrain to unveil their genuine floor after the launch car’s mock one.

It’s not surprising that Red Bull opted not to reveal the exact car for the season, as many teams adopt a similar strategy.

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For instance, Williams only disclosed their new livery at their launch event.

In addition to striving for another championship, Red Bull also faces a decision regarding Sergio Perez’s future.

Although the Mexican driver has stated that it’s not his primary focus, it will certainly linger in his mind and that of his competitors who aspire to drive for Red Bull in the future.