Red Bull set to introduce raft of upgrades after “no surprises” in RB20 shakedown

Insight into Red Bull RB20's shakedown - and when they will introduce their first upgrades - has been shared.

The new RB20 at Red Bull's car launch
The new RB20 at Red Bull's car launch

Former Red Bull driver David Coulthard has revealed the shakedown of the RB20 went as expected, confirming they only ran a “launch iteration” of the car.

Red Bull completed a shakedown at Silverstone of their 2024 F1 challenger - the RB20 - two days before the official launch.

The Milton Keynes outfit were the 10th and final team to pull the covers off their new car, with the team’s aggressive, Mercedes-like design choices attracting the most attention.

Speaking to the official F1 website, he spoke of Red Bull's shakedown: “Just that it functions as you would expect in those conditions - no surprises.

“I think the technical team were happy with the numbers they were getting in terms of… the things you can get out of that, the cooling and load sensors.”

The Scotsman confirmed that Red Bull will bring a number of upgrades to the first test, and could even bring more new parts to the season-opener in Bahrain next weekend.

“Even if you went out and thought the car was amazing in a shakedown, the only thing that matters is Saturday qualifying and ultimately Sunday race [at the first round] in Bahrain,” he added.

“It’s a launch iteration… there will be upgrades coming to the test up until the last day and there might even be an upgrade that comes for the Friday of the Bahrain race, and all of these upgrades are expected to change performance, balance and lap time.”

Max Verstappen, Adrian Newey and Sergio Perez in front of the new RB20
Max Verstappen, Adrian Newey and Sergio Perez in front of the new RB20

Red Bull enjoyed a remarkable 2023 campaign, winning 21 of the 22 races.

Ferrari were the only team to stop them from going through the entire season invincible, but the battle behind Red Bull often changed between four different teams.

Coulthard is unsure which team will be Red Bull’s nearest threat, offering an argument for Ferrari, Mercedes and McLaren.

“I don’t have a crystal ball, but you’ve got to believe Ferrari had a strong car last year in terms of single-lap pace,” he explained.

“If they’ve managed to improve on whatever it was that was making their race pace difficult then they are a real contender.

“Mercedes were making big strides at the end of the year… McLaren, again, back of the grid in Bahrain, pretty much at the front of the grid in Abu Dhabi, so huge growth during the course of the year.”

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