Horner: Red Bull still way off competing with Mercedes and Ferrari

Christian Horner

Challenging Mercedes and Ferrari is still someway off for Red Bull despite their move to Honda engines in 2019, says Christian Horner.

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner says it is unrealistic to expect Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly to challenge Mercedes and Ferrari this season.

Having switched from Renault power to a Honda engine for 2019, Horner had previously said the move could be the “missing ingredient” for Red Bull after frustrations with their former supplier.

Pre-season testing has been positive for Red Bull but, heading into the opening race of the new season, Horner says they still have some way to go to close the gap.

“We’ve got an exciting new partnership with Honda starting this weekend so it’s off to a positive start, but we have to keep expectations realistic,” he said at the F1 season launch in Melbourne on Wednesday.

“There’s a big gap to close from Mercedes and Ferrari.

“But we’re confident that we can do that during the course of the year.”

Red Bull finished 236 points behind champions Mercedes last season, the team only winning four races across the year.