Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner anticipates “a real opportunity” to take the Formula 1 title fight to Mercedes this year thanks to stability from all sides.

With the Milton Keynes-based squad retaining both Max Verstappen and Alex Albon for this season, while the Dutch driver is fresh from signing a new deal securing him to the team until the end of 2023, it also has solidity from the F1 technical rules and its power unit partner Honda.

Having demonstrated impressive performance gains over the second half of last season resulting in three wins for Verstappen, team boss Horner remains optimistic of a stronger F1 title challenge against fellow front-running rivals Mercedes and Ferrari.

“For the first time in probably five or six years we’ve got stability in the regulations and that gives us a real opportunity to take the fight to our rivals,” Horner said.

“The lessons we learned last year have been carried over from RB15 to RB16. We also have stability in the Team and that, alongside the momentum we built over the second half of last year, means we’re in a very good place to mount a strong challenge this year.

“A big factor to enable us to mount a challenge is the power unit and in Honda we have an intensely motivated and competitive partner. Honda did a great job in 2019 and each iteration of the power year brought more performance and more power. It feels like we’re getting closer to our main rivals.”

Red Bull became the last of the 10 F1 teams to confirm its launch plans, as it prepares to reveal the RB16 in a digital presentation next Wednesday (February 12).

It is understood the RB16 will also hit the track for the first time on Wednesday for a shakedown at Silverstone, a week before pre-season testing begins at Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya on February 19.