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Red Bull RB19 Concept Copying

Copying RB19 Design Offers Rivals Little Edge in F1

12/01/2024

The concept of copying Red Bull‘s RB19 has become a focal point in Formula 1. Teams are eyeing the successful strategies and designs of the RB19, aiming to replicate its remarkable performance and technological innovations in the racing world.

Pierre Waché, the Technical Director of Red Bull Racing, asserts that rivals will gain little advantage from replicating significant elements of the RB19’s design. The vehicle, which propelled Red Bull to great success in 2023, indeed featured several intriguing components. However, Waché believes that in Formula 1, copying without a deep understanding and knowledge is not a wise move, even though it’s theoretically feasible.

It bears repeating: Red Bull had an exceptional and fantastic year. With a team of talented individuals, including the driven Max Verstappen at the wheel of the RB19, the car’s robust concept was almost the icing on the cake in their journey to dominance. This dominance didn’t take long to manifest, as the competition often trailed a significant distance behind Verstappen.

Red Bull, understandably, feels satisfied with their 2023 performance. However, their rivals are actively working to narrow the gap with the Austrian team in 2024. As a result, teams are closely monitoring Red Bull’s car. Still, Waché predicts that copying elements of the RB19’s concept will pose a significant challenge.

Copying the Red Bull RB19 Concept.

In a discussion with Motorsport.com, Red Bull’s Technical Director emphasized that the act of copying is not the most challenging part for competitors. “Copying might be an option, but there’s an even more crucial question. As in many technical sectors, the issue is not so much how we do something, but why we make a choice.” Designing and fine-tuning a Formula 1 car concept is already a complex task, but Waché also knows that teams will make little progress with a concept they don’t fully understand. “If you don’t know why you’re copying, you might as well make hundreds of copies, but it’s better to follow a path where everything is completely understood.”

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To many, the notion of copying components from competitors might seem strange, but Pierre Waché emphasized that in Formula 1, it’s not an unusual idea. “We ourselves sometimes copy or draw inspiration from others’ designs. It reminds me a bit of Darwin’s theory, but within our sport.” In Formula 1, everything revolves around improvement and constant development. However, in recent years, it became clear what happens when concepts are copied indiscriminately. “If you see something somewhere, you can use it to try to enhance your own concept, but the key is understanding the copied element. Copying just for the sake of it is pointless; it’s essential to have the necessary knowledge and work towards a certain overall picture.”

Replicating the Red Bull RB19 Design

The Technical Director points out another crucial aspect of copying in Formula 1, highlighting the sport’s relative nature in the usefulness of certain concepts. It’s not guaranteed that one concept will definitely be more successful than another. However, the Frenchman emphasizes one thing: “Everything is relative. It’s quite possible that next year the competition might adopt the exact same concept we used last year. But if they manage to close the gap, that once successful concept might not seem as strong anymore.”

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Red Bull consistently demonstrated in 2023 that they lacked neither knowledge nor understanding of their concept, and Waché also observed that the Austrian team had their technical affairs well managed. “All the elements came together nicely for us. We couldn’t eliminate all weaknesses, but the remaining flaws didn’t lead to any dramatic issues.” Despite a highly successful season, the Grand Prix of Singapore stood out as the only major disappointment after Verstappen missed the win, yet Waché believes the Austrian team had little else to complain about. “The balance between downforce and drag was good, and our tire management was excellent, positively impacting our race pace.”

Regarding the competition, Waché has one thing to say: there’s no secret formula for achieving dominance. “That will always depend on the state of the competition. They might have made a development error in their cars last year, but looking at McLaren, for example, the situation could be entirely different.” While McLaren appeared to be on the rise, Mercedes and Ferrari struggled for a longer period, and Waché has a general idea of why that was. “Other teams just approached it differently, but this makes the differences between all the teams quite evident. If the competition had taken different steps, I might not even be talking about Red Bull’s dominance now!”

Red Bull RB19 Concept Copying

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