Rob Smedley and Pedro de la Rosa discuss Red Bull Racing’s dominance during the 2023 season. In Tom Clarkson’s F1 Nation podcast, the two former colleagues indicate that Red Bull can certainly still be caught up. According to Smedley, it is clear that Red Bull has a strong car during the race, but at least during the qualifying sessions they can certainly still be beaten.
Red Bull has shown that they are dominant in the first three races of the 2023 season. De La Rosa indicates in the podcast that he does not feel that much has changed compared to the race in Jeddah. “In Melbourne there was again a clear dominance of Red Bull,” says the Spanish former driver. “Obviously they just have a full package with all the bells and whistles. If you look at Jeddah’s analysis, it’s almost frightening to see how fast the Red Bull are when they can get loose.
The Spaniard does expect things to be different in Baku. “On the circuit in Azerbaijan you need relatively little downforce and there is also a long straight. I don’t expect Red Bull to be as competitive in Baku as in the first three races, no.’ Smedley, a former Ferrari engineer, among others, agrees with De La Rosa. “Red Bull can certainly still be overtaken,” the Brit believes. ‘Especially in the qualifying sessions they can still be beaten. It is obvious that they have a strong car, but the other teams have to keep their hopes up and keep fighting. It’s not like Red Bull can’t be overtaken anymore.’
Smedley: ‘Aston Martin biggest contender to catch Red Bull’
If it’s up to Smedley, Aston Martin is a big contender to get close to Red Bull. If that doesn’t work this season, he will see it happen next season. “Everyone says that Aston Martin’s current success is due to the large investments, but that is not true at all,” says the British engineer. ‘They still work from the factory where I worked with Eddie Jordan in the nineties, which is really bizarre. Just think how it will be for the team if they do start working from the new factories. The team is doing great. If they learn how to win, I can see them winning a world championship,” said Smedley.