Red Bull Racing technical chief Adrian Newey insists that completing a constructors' championship hat-trick is a tribute to the hard work that needed to be put in to pull the team back up to the front of the F1 field in 2012.
RBR clinched its third straight teams' title, and its third in just eight years under its current guise having largely failed as both Stewart and Jaguar, with a round to spare when Sebastian Vettel finished second to Lewis Hamilton in Sunday's US Grand Prix, but Newey admits that it has been a tougher season than either 2010 or 2011.
While Vettel's sole remaining rival for the drivers' title, Fernando Alonso, is quick to point out that he is fighting both the German and
Newey as the season heads to an intriguing climax in Brazil this weekend, the renowned aerodynamicist is keen to emphasise that winning the teams' crown was the result of a far bigger effort.
“It's been an amazing year - to achieve the hat-trick is a tremendous tribute to the whole team,” he claimed, “The hard work, the dedication, the talent of the people back in Milton Keynes – that's what this is all about. I hope they are celebrating and having a drink tonight.”
While McLaren opened the season with a brace of front row lock-outs, victory for Jenson Button in Australia and a succession of podiums for the Briton and team-mate Lewis Hamilton, Red Bull found itself on the back foot as it followed its own path in an attempt to make up for the loss of blown diffuser technology. Although Vettel won in Bahrain, the constructors' race remained a three-horse race – with the unexpected inclusion of Ferrari – until the Milton Keynes team began to edge away in the closing stages.
“It shows we've managed to keep our standards up and keep consistency,” Newey commented, “We are always thinking how we can improve the car and what we can do in the coming races.
“It's been a difficult year and, unfortunately, my pre-season concerns proved to be right. Having developed the car around side exhaust technology for the last two years, losing that was a bigger step back for us than our competitors and it's been quite a difficult evolution to get the car back to where we wanted.”
Winning the teams' title for a third straight year is no mean feat in F1, previously achieved only by Ferrari, Williams and McLaren in times of dominance, and Newey insists that it is a mark of how far Red Bull has come since taking over the Jaguar programme at the end of the 2004 campaign.
“Getting a third title shows we're not a flash in the pan,” Newey claimed, “We've managed to stay at the top, to understand the car and maintain consistency, which is not easy at all.”
The hat-trick is also confirmation that joining what had previously been a struggling outfit was the right move after all.
“The first title was amazing because, when I left McLaren for Red Bull, it was a bit of a career gamble,” the Briton admitted, “I was joining with a dream of perhaps trying to win races in the future with the team that I'd been involved with more or less from the start. To actually fulfil that dream and to achieve three titles has been amazing.
“We can all have dreams, but to do it is something special. It's not just me personally, but it's the whole team and this is a tribute to everyone within it.”