Aero test penalty demands precision, says Verstappen


While many still believe the $7m fine for exceeding the budget cap to be derisory, Max Verstappen admits that the reduction on aero testing will present an altogether different problem for Red Bull.

Along with the fine, the Austrian team was hit with a 10% reduction in aero testing, namely windtunnel and computational fluid dynamics (CFD).

While this in itself is bad enough, it is in addition to the reduction the team is already facing as a result of the handicap system introduced in 2021. Under the system, Red Bull was entitled to 70% of the agreed baseline this year, however, with the 10 penalty this becomes 63% compared to Ferrari's 75% and Mercedes 80%. Williams, on the other hand, which finished tenth last season, is allowed 115%.

Speaking at the RB19 'reveal, Max Verstappen admitted that the reduction in aero testing time means the Austrian team is going to need to be on the ball from the outset.

"You have to probably be a little bit more precise in planning, with what you want to try and test, instead of sometimes throwing around a few things and see if it actually improves the car or not," he warned.

"But we are confident we can deal with that," he insisted. "Of course, there are always things, maybe with a little bit more time, you find a bit more performance.

"I do think if we have a good start to the year, everything should be good but it's a bit too early to say at the moment."

While, for the most part, Red Bull avoided the porpoising issues that affected its rivals, the RB18 did have a weight problem.

"We know one main area last year was the weight of the car, that the car was overweight, so that is our target for this year, to make sure it's not the same," admitted the Dutchman. "We are confident that will be fixed.

"From there, it's a lot of other stuff we want to work on," he continued. "I cannot go into too much detail, of course, about what that is exactly. But it's the same as what I try to work on as a driver. You always try to look at yourself, as to what can you do better.

"You try to come back stronger every single year, even though sometimes of course, that's a hard task, but it's the same approach, and at the end of the day, you also have that with the car itself."

Article from Pitpass (

Published: 04/02/2023
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