Red Bull Racing's David Coulthard has admitted that the team faces a battle over the remainder of the Formula One season to try and ensure it finishes as 'best of the rest' behind Ferrari, McLaren and BMW.
Having enjoyed a solid start to the season, the Milton Keynes-based outfit has struggled in recent events and has failed to score in the last three races at Silverstone, Hockenheim and the Hungaroring.
Toyota and Renault have both been able to steal a march on Red Bull as a result, helped in part by podium finishes for Timo Glock and Nelson Piquet Jr in recent events, and it means that the team has slipped to sixth in the constructors' championship – eleven points behind Toyota and seven behind Renault.
Speaking in his latest ITV-F1
column, Coulthard admitted that Red Bull had lost some pace compared to its rivals, but said that development of the RB4 would continue in an effort to reclaim fourth position.
"We've slipped behind Renault to sixth in the constructors' championship and lost touch with Toyota," DC reflected. "Not good, but not the end of the world either. The balance of power in the midfield battle has swung from one team to another all season, and a lot can change over the remaining seven races.
"Having said that, we have to recognise the fact that we haven't scored points in the past two races, which would suggest that our underlying pace has dropped off compared to a month or so ago.Our performance has only slipped by maybe half a percent; in effect we've stood still while the teams around us have taken a step forward, whereas earlier in the season we were the ones stealing a march on the competition.
"We just have to try to understand why we have lost that fraction of relative pace and get back onto the more fruitful development path we were on a few weeks ago. All the teams are having to divide their resources between 2008 and 2009 work, but certainly in our case, development of the RB4 is continuing apace as we chase our goal of fourth in the constructors' table."