Finally RBR debuts their RB6...
Red Bull roll out the RB6 at JerezOne of the most eagerly-awaited of the 2010 cars was unveiled on Wednesday, as Red Bull revealed their RB6 at Spain’s Jerez circuit, where the year’s second pre-season test is getting underway.
Following their six Grand Prix wins of 2009, which powered the team to second place in the constructors’ championship, Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber will again be at the wheel of the Adrian Newey-designed challenger, and Red Bull, hopeful they can emulate their successes of last season, are openly targeting their first title.
“Having won Grands Prix, achieved pole positions and finished second in both the constructors’ and drivers’ championships, our goal for 2010 has to be to go for the championship,” said team principal Christian Horner. “2009 was a massive year for the team and I think we took a huge step forward. Red Bull Racing’s still a relatively young team and so the lessons that we learned last year will serve us well going into 2010.
“The performance of the car developed throughout 2009 and I believe we ended the year with the best chassis. We’ve had stability over the winter and continuity in all areas, so I think we’re in good shape. We completely respect the quality of our opponents, but we’re setting ourselves aggressive targets. It’s fantastic to see the car finally taking to the track after so much hard work and effort.”
While the team are keen to emphasize the RB6 has evolved from its race-winning predecessor, there are clear changes - not least the addition of a larger fuel tank, the adoption of this year’s narrower front tyres, and at the rear, a fully integrated double diffuser.
“The RB6 is very much an evolution of the 2009 car; we tried to refine and evolve it rather than go to new concepts,” explained chief technical officer Adrian Newey. “As a result, the car looks similar with elements such as the chassis and pull-rod rear suspension retained. The two main challenges were the larger fuel tank and the smaller front tyre.
“With the fuel tank, there was more to it than simply putting a bigger tank in the car - it puts more load on the brakes, so the brake cooling has to cope with that and you also have to consider what effect that extra fuel will have on the tyre degradation early in the race and if there’s anything we should change mechanically to cope with that.
“The narrower front tyre changes weight distribution and the balance of the car. I think it’s a sensible evolution of the 2009 car. One obvious difference is that the 2009 car was not designed to suit a double-diffuser and we had to try to put one on as best we could around the existing rear suspension and gearbox. With this car we’ve been able to design that part of the car from scratch.”
Webber gave the car its initial run at Jerez shortly after the wraps came off, the team having opted to skip last week’s Valencia session to give them more development and wind tunnel time. Although he’s standing at the sidelines on Wednesday, Vettel will also get to sample the RB6 during this week’s four-day test.