Red Bull’s ‘overpowered’ DRS raises eyebrows

Former Formula One driver Damon Hill has praised Red Bull for their impressive speed, claiming it’s got the paddock’s attention.

1996 World Champion Damon Hill has heaped praise on Red Bull’s phenomenal pace in the opening two races of the 2023 season.

The dominant performances from Red Bull have raised fears from their rivals that the team could be untouchable this season, wrapping up both championships with ease.

In Bahrain, Red Bull secured a one-two, with Max Verstappen 38 seconds and Sergio Perez 26 seconds clear of their rivals. 

Saudi Arabia proved an even more impressive night for Verstappen who breezed his way through a circuit that can be tricky to overtake on, moving from 15th on the grid to 2nd

READ: Max Verstappen will continue to ignore team orders

When asked about the RB19, Lewis Hamilton claimed he had “never seen a car so fast” on the grid.

Hill echoed this point, accepting that Red Bull “are able to accelerate a lot more” than their competition, showing the “huge speed differential when the DRS is open.”

“That’s going to get everyone’s attention,” Hill added. “I noticed it last year – they have a very interesting rear wing, very elongated and when you look at it and it goes into DRS mode, it has a very low profile. I think they’ve done a lot of work on that.”

“It gives them a bigger advantage than the others when they have DRS. I think everyone else is going to look at that and say maybe they’re missing something,” the former world champion continued.

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Historically, Red Bull has struggled to achieve strong straight line speed in previous iterations of their car. 

However, the introduction of the greatest overhaul of technical regulations in the history of the sport has seen Red Bill find impress straight line pace with their RB18 and RB19 cars. 

Other teams have been left scrambling at the start of the 2023 season to find any way to compete with Red Bull. 

READ: Toto Wolff says Mercedes need to ‘double development speed’ to catch Red Bull

Both Mercedes and Ferrari have conceded that the updates they are bringing to Australia will not be enough to put them back in the fight.

“All the teams have improvements every weekend,” Ferrari team principal Frederic Vasseur said. “But it was already planned, it’s not because of the last result. You always have to develop the car and so will Red Bull.”

“We just need to have double the development speed, a strong development slope,” Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff admitted.