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Red Bull Racing

How Red Bull aim to provide driver equality in championship battle

With Red Bull the firm favourites to take both championship titles in 2023, Christian Horner believes he can stay on top of the intra-team battle between Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez.

Sergio Perez Red Bull Racing Miami Grand Prix 2023
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Christian Horner says he is hoping to lean on past experiences to ensure driver equality at the Red Bull team as both drivers eye up the 2023 Formula 1 Driver's Championship.

With the RB19 becoming the class of the field, this season's Constructors' Championship looks set to be won by the Red Bull team, with either Max Verstappen or Sergio Perez taking the Drivers' title.

The Red Bull drivers face a crucial triple-header of races in the 2023 championship, starting with a visit to Imola for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, which is followed by the Monaco and Spanish Grands Prix.

Despite Verstappen extending his championship lead to 14 points in Miami, Perez has set his sights on recovering lost ground and proving himself to be a championship contender.

The relationship between the two drivers threatened to break down at last season's Brazilian Grand Prix, but the pair have enjoyed a cooperative relationship so far this year.

Red Bull are no strangers to squabbling drivers. Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber famously came to blows during their time as teammates from 2009-2013, and Verstappen also had heated moments with former teammate Daniel Ricciardo, although this was never in a championship battle.

Team Principal Christian Horner says he is hoping to lean on his past experiences with warring Red Bull teammates, and described the "pains" of providing driver equality.

"I think that it's a luxury problem," Horner told media, including RacingNews365.com.

"Any team principal in the pit lane would hope to have that issue, and it's something we’ve experienced before. I think the most key thing is to ensure that paranoia doesn't creep in and that both drivers are treated equally.

"You go to pains to provide equality, to the point of who drives out the garage first each weekend, it alternates. It even alternates in the debrief who talks first.

"But, it's racing, it's Formula 1, and occasionally something will happen like a Safety Car or a pit stop, and you can't control every aspect within the sport. There are still variables.

"I think so long as the drivers know that they're both getting an equal chance, and it's ultimately down to what they do on the circuit. That's where you want it to play out, not through reliability, for example, to play a key role in a championship fight between your two drivers within your own team."

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RESULTS 2024 F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix