Red Bull’s “strength and depth” has resulted in its targets rising “very high” for the 2020 Formula 1 season, according to team principal Christian Horner.

In its second year powered by Honda engines, Red Bull aims to mount a sustained title challenge to rivals Mercedes and Ferrari this season, with Max Verstappen eyeing a first drivers’ title following his strongest campaign in F1 to date in 2019.

The Red Bull-Honda partnership secured three victories throughout 2019 and Horner says the combination of its power unit, chassis, and driver line-up means the teams ambitions have increased.

“I think we’ve got a very strong team,” Horner said.

“Our driver line-up and our team’s strength in depth, our engine partner is a key aspect as well and has been the missing ingredient for the past few years.

“That relationship with Honda really grew over the course of last year with the three victories we achieved, the pole positions we achieved and of course heading into the second year with continuity and the power unit more integrated into the chassis.

“Our expectations are growing and rising and our targets are very high this year so that is the challenge. We know we have some fierce opponents and great competitors.

“We do have the strength in depth within our team to hopefully put a real challenge together this year.”

Red Bull enjoyed a strong pre-season in Barcelona while much mystery surrounds Ferrari’s competitiveness and Mercedes appeared fast but was compromised by engine-related reliability issues.

Horner stressed it was “dangerous” to read too much into testing and said it would be “foolish” to underestimate any of Red Bull’s rivals heading to the season-opener in Melbourne.

“That is always the dangerous thing about pre-season testing, trying to draw too many conclusions,” he explained.

“Ferrari look understated at the last test but they are starting to wind it up and I think it would be foolish to underestimate them going to Melbourne.

“Mercedes are the reigning six-time world champions and very much the favourites.

“Their form has always looked strong here and you want to have your issues in testing not when you are racing so winter testing can sometimes be a little deceptive but I think it will be the same teams fighting at the sharp end of the grid this year.”