Red Bull team boss Christian Horner believes Max Verstappen still retains a chance of winning the world title this season despite the Dutchman’s 37-point deficit to championship leader Lewis Hamilton.
Mercedes has triumphed in five of the six races held to date, with Hamilton bagging four wins and Verstappen taking top spoils at the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at Silverstone.
Verstappen’s defeat of Mercedes was fair and square, built on a flawless performance and an optimal strategy.
But overhauling the reigning world champion seem like a massively tall order for the Red Bull charger, yet Horner isn’t giving up on his team’s title aspirations for 2020.
“Yes, we are still an outsider. We have a long way to go but we still have a chance,” Horner said in the latest F1 Nation podcast.
“In the past we’ve won races thanks to our strategy or by taking advantage of an ‘off day’ at Mercedes, but if you look at Silverstone…there we just won on our own strength.”
Horner believes the upcoming ban on special engine modes in qualifying – a change that could erode Mercedes’ speed in the Saturday afternoon session – could help Red Bull’s cause.
“We have to wait and see how the ban on different engine settings works out and we have to keep improving ourselves with our own car,” said the Briton.
“We are now fully focused on that, all the more so because this will also be the starting point for next year.”
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Before Mercedes initiated its reign in Formula 1 in 2014, the sport was dominated in the previous four years by Red Bull Racing.
Drivers have come and gone since then, but many of the team’s original members who savored its championship winning years remain at Milton Keynes, yearning for a return to glory.
“We have of course strengthened ourselves here and there but I can still mainly see the same faces as back then,” Horner he said.
“All those people are very motivated to get into a title fight again and are doing everything they can.”
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