Red Bull reveals launch date


Red Bull has become the eighth team to announce the launch date of its 2018 contender.

The wraps will come off the RB14 next Monday, 19 February, as the Austrian team attempts to put the difficulties of the RB13 well and truly behind it.

The early launch date means that Red Bull, usually among the last to launch, will this year be one of the first, Grove rivals Williams beating it to pole. Indeed, it is believed the practice of launching the car at the very last possible moment has been the part of the problem for the Austrian outfit in recent years, which this year clearly intends to be prepared from the outset.

While the RB13 was the decent chassis one would always expect from the Milton Keynes squad, woeful engine reliability and sheer bad luck compromised the team throughout the season, with Max Verstappen particularly badly hit in the first half of the year and Daniel Ricciardo in the latter stages.

With the Dutch driver now tied into a new three-year deal, the team will be hoping that the RB14 is enough to persuade Ricciardo to remain on board, the Australian out of contract at the end of the year and highly fancied by Mercedes.

Also out of contract at the end of the season is the team's deal with Renault, leaving the Austrian outfit with severely limited options going forward. Indeed, the most likely scenario in 2019 appears to be a Red Bull-Honda partnership, though much will depend on the fortunes of sister outfit Toro Rosso which is using the Japanese manufacturer's engines this year after three disastrous seasons as supplier to McLaren.

With Williams the first team scheduled to launch, the FW41 to be unveiled this Thursday, Haas and Force India remain the only teams still to announce their reveals.

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Published: 12/02/2018
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