Dec.3 (GMM) 2020 “should be our year”, according to Red Bull’s confident top official Dr Helmut Marko.
The Honda-powered team is under pressure to finally break through with a title-winning package for 2020, in order to keep Max Verstappen for 2021.
“I don’t know if we should talk to everyone, but we should at least talk to the top teams,” Verstappen’s father and co-manager Jos Verstappen told Ziggo Sport on Monday.
“Because the rules are staying the same, there is a greater chance that they (Red Bull) will be able to fight from the start next year,” he acknowledged.
“I have good hopes, but we will have to see how things go.”
Marko, though, is confident.
“Of course Mercedes is the favourite, but I think 2020 should be our year,” he told the Dutch publication Formule 1.
Marko also thinks Verstappen, 22, is now ready to win a world championship.
“It was a very mature season for Max. It was the most mature Max we have ever seen,” he said.
“We also know what we can expect from Honda,” he added. “What they have promised us, they have delivered so far.”
Even the usual Verstappen critic Jacques Villeneuve agrees that the Dutchman appears ready to win in 2020.
“He has really grown up, driving differently and better,” the 1997 world champion told NOS.
“He has changed from a race winner to a champion candidate. Yes, I realise the Netherlands is in shock because I make a compliment, but it was nothing personal.
“He is handling criticism better and better, and even though his car was not fast enough he never panicked or given up.
“In Mexico he was a bit more like the old Max, but one out of 21 is pretty good,” Villeneuve added.
As for Red Bull-Honda’s 2020 rivals, Villeneuve said: “I don’t think Ferrari is ready for 2020. And while Red Bull and Honda have peaked a few times, I would put my money on a seventh title for Lewis.”
F1 Changes Starting in 2021 - After many months of discussions and deliberations, Formula 1’s ten teams have now agreed to the terms of the “Concorde Agreement” that binds them to the world championship for another five years.
This agreement is a contract between Formula 1, the FIA governing body and the teams which wish to compete in the F1 World Championship from 2021 to 2025 and defines how F1’s television revenues and prize money will be distributed.
Formula 1 bosses have been keen to build a strong foundation on which to secure the long-term future for the championship. As such a revolutionary new budget cap will be introduced next year, along with new technical regulations and a new set of sporting rules coming in 2022.
The Covid-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for everyone in 2020, and has served as another reminder that something needed to change. Once the championship restarted, so too could the commercial agreement talks.
By changing the way the prize money is distributed, it was inevitable that some teams would be happy – as they would receive a greater share – and others less so, as they would have a smaller slice.
But ultimately, as they have increasingly done in recent months, all the stakeholders found a way to come together and compromise on the document, which they agreed to in time for the early deadline of August 18th – which brought a small financial incentive.
With the 10 teams signed up for the next five years, and the regulations and cost cap defined, Formula 1 can finally embark on a new era. The new agreement also squashes any speculation that teams like Mercedes or Haas might not be around for the long term.
The hope now is that all F1 teams can develop themselves into robust operations financially while also closing the pack in terms of competitiveness that can in turn improve the racing spectacle.
Roll on 2021!