Sunday, May 19, 2024

Red Bull’s Christian Horner: “It’s a landmark day today and one for our history books”

Christian Horner was thrilled to see Oracle Red Bull Racing secure their one hundredth win in the FIA Formula 1 World Championship on Sunday after Max Verstappen dominated the Canadian Grand Prix from pole position.

Red Bull’s first win came in the wet of Shanghai back in 2009 when Sebastian Vettel took the chequered flag first, and Team Principal Horner says it was ‘amazing’ to reach one hundred races in Formula 1, let alone one hundred victories.

It was also Verstappen’s forty-first win – matching the tally of Ayrton Senna – and Technical Director Adrian Newey’s two hundredth in Formula 1.  And Horner was full of praise for everyone who was able to make these notable events possible.

“It’s a landmark day today and one for our history books, 100 victories for the team, 200 for Adrian and Max’s 41st putting him up there with Senna,” said Horner.  “An amazing result for the whole team, not just the people here, but everyone back at the factory who works so hard, ensuring we continue to perform at such a high level.

“I remember our first victory in China in 2009 and being happy that we’d won just one race, and here we are with 99 more. To get a century of victories is an incredible achievement, competing in 100 races is a feat in itself, but winning 27% of all races we have entered is something truly to be proud of.

“It’s been an amazing journey in a relatively short space of time and it’s down to our incredible people, our spirit and our culture.”

Looking back at the race that saw Verstappen lead every lap – the third consecutive race where he has led every single lap – Horner admitted getting the tyres in their correct working temperature was difficult, while team-mate Sergio Pérez was also made to work hard to climb from twelfth to sixth.

Horner knows Pérez has not had it easy in the past few races and now sits sixty-nine points behind Verstappen in the Drivers’ Championship having been almost equal to him after the first four races.

“Max has obviously been a big part of the journey with 41 of those wins, he’s driving so incredibly well and it’s a privilege to witness the level that he’s delivering at,” Horner added.  “It was a tricky race for him because the tyre temperatures were not in a happy window but he made the most of it and secured the win.

“Checo equally had a fairly tough race. I know he is hungry for more and will already be looking at ways to improve on his performance.”

Horner says the team will celebrate their successes following their win in Canada, but their focus will quickly turn to the Austrian Grand Prix at the beginning of July, the second of six Sprint Race weekends in 2023.

“Tomorrow, we’ll celebrate as a team back in the factory, but of course we’re still in the middle of a championship and have a lot of races to go, so after tomorrow the attention is on our home race in Austria in two weeks’ time,” he said.

“For now, though we can reflect on a job well down here in Canada and celebrate our 100 wins. Great work Team!”