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The 9 franchises from 2000 to today - the fate of 'em all


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#1 jeze

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 15:15

Remember pre-season in 2000 anyone? Ferrari and Schumacher looking to take their first crown together, McLaren and Häkkinen gunning for a hat trick in the WDC, Jaguar coming in dreaming of green stands and promising early Grand Prix wins...

Interestingly, these three franchises are the ones that are on top of things now, but you could hardly credit Jaguar for doing that :rotfl:

Let's see how all these teams have evolved (with the drivers picked to start the seasons/driving the majority of them mentioned):

Ferrari were expected to go and win the 2000 WDC which Schumacher duly did. Having come off a 1999 WCC-winning campaign the team looked well-oiled strategy wise and performed great at the pit stops. They also had a driver aged 31 performing at his very peak.

2000 Schumacher/Barrichello
2001 Schumacher/Barrichello
2002 Schumacher/Barrichello
2003 Schumacher/Barrichello
2004 Schumacher/Barrichello
2005 Schumacher/Barrichello
2006 Schumacher/Massa
2007 Räikkönen/Massa
2008 Räikkönen/Massa
2009 Räikkönen/Massa
2010 Alonso/Massa
2011 Alonso/Massa
2012 Alonso/Massa

Titles (WDC): 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2007
2nd (WDC): 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010
3rd (WDC): 2001, 2005, 2008

Titles (WCC): 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008
2nd (WCC): 2006
3rd (WCC): 2005, 2010, 2011

Position today relative to end of 1999: Essentially the same. Some flaws but a star drivers rescues the team on a regular basis, fighting for championships against the odds. Very good continuity on the driver side and now Ferrari have a driver in his early 30s perfoming at his peak.

Verdict: A little worse off, but still looking good.

McLaren had won the 1998 and 1999 drivers' crowns thanks to Mika Häkkinen's ability and Adrian Newey's genius (yep you read it). For 2000 the only acceptable target was a hat trick, and Mika fought hard but stumbled due to an engine failure in the USA in late September. Coulthard also did a good job, recording several wins, enjoying his best F1 season, after surviving a horrific plane crash.

2000 Häkkinen/Coulthard
2001 Häkkinen/Coulthard
2002 Räikkönen/Coulthard
2003 Räikkönen/Coulthard
2004 Räikkönen/Coulthard
2005 Räikkönen/Montoya
2006 Räikkönen/Montoya
2007 Hamilton/Alonso
2008 Hamilton/Kovalainen
2009 Hamilton/Kovalainen
2010 Hamilton/Button
2011 Hamilton/Button
2012 Hamilton/Button

WDC titles: 2008
WDC 2nd's: 2000, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2011
WDC 3rd's: 2000, 2007

WCC 2nd's: 2000, 2001, 2005, 2008, 2010, 2011
WCC 3rd's: 2002, 2003, 2006, 2009

Position today: Worse off. Being held ransom in contract talks with Hamilton and having failed to win the WCC since 1998 speaks volumes. Also no longer a factory team, since Mercedes left. Still a team that has championships in them, but this century it hasn't worked out very well. The only sustained titles charges were when Ferrari arguably had a weaker line-up of Räikkönen and Massa than what teams with the fastest car normally have.

Verdict: A good team, albeit with ground to make up to challenge for titles again.

Jordan were going for broke to win more Grands Prix in 2000. After Frentzen had guided them to a couple of wins and a 3rd in the 1999 WDC, they were confident to bang on the drum that they were now a top team. Damon Hill's presence had increased revenue and due to that legacy, they had managed to tie down Frentzen to a big three-year contract, fending off interest from Jaguar. New boy Jarno Trulli was hailed as an incredibly exciting signing. In the end their 2000 season was a disappointment.

2000 Frentzen/Trulli
2001 Frentzen/Trulli
2002 Fisichella/Sato
2003 Fisichella/Firman
2004 Heidfeld/Pantano
2005 Monteiro/Karthíkeyan
2006 Monteiro/Albers (as Midland)
2007 Sutil/Albers (as Spyker)
2008 Sutil/Fisichella (as Force India)
2009 Sutil/Fisichella
2010 Sutil/Liuzzi
2011 Sutil/Di Resta
2012 Di Resta/Hülkenberg

Position today: Ownership as Force India by Mallya has been stable for some years by now. The team can be under no illusions about challenging for the WDC like in 1999 with Jordan and has a commercially weaker base. Wise driver selection and a solid aero department helps the team being competitive in the ultra-tight midfield. Can rattle the big boys having off-days.

Verdict: Worse off, but they did survive.

Jaguar had just bought off Jackie Stewart and inherited a team that had finished 4th in the 1999 WCC against the odds. Star driver Barrichello had been replaced by WDC bridesmaid Eddie Irvine, who became one of Ford's best-paid employees. Ultimately the technical department was in a shambles and the season was a disaster. A 2001 attempt to hire Newey had to wait a few years and it was only then under Red Bull ownership the team turned into the powerhouse they are today.

2000 Irvine/Herbert
2001 Irvine/de la Rosa
2002 Irvine/de la Rosa
2003 Webber/Pizzonia
2004 Webber/Klien
2005 Coulthard/Klien (as Red Bull)
2006 Coulthard/Klien
2007 Coulthard/Webber
2008 Coulthard/Webber
2009 Vettel/Webber
2010 Vettel/Webber
2011 Vettel/Webber
2012 Vettel/Webber

WDC's: 2010, 2011
WDC 2nd's: 2009
WDC 3rd's: 2010, 2011

WCC's: 2010, 2011
WCC 2nd's: 2009

Position today: Red Bull is a huge powerhouse that has risen to dominate F1 car technology. The promotion of Sebastian Vettel and the 2009 clean slate in regulations saw Red Bull emerge as a top team and they show no sign of backing off just yet.

Verdict: Quite a bit better, but they still went into the 2000 season as Jaguar being considered as top four. They weren't.

Williams came from a dominant era turned sour when Renault stopped delivering factory engines and failing to get on top of the grooved tyres as well. Having agreed a long-term deal with BMW, it looked set to be a trying year as they were under no illusions about immediate victories. Ralf Schumacher had just signed a monstrous contract with the team, whilst rookie Jenson Button took to the scene, being a choice that shocked the entire industry. That was after Olivier Panis had honoured his agreement to join McLaren as 3rd driver. Juan Pablo Montoya was loaned out to Ganassi for another year.

2000 Schumacher/Button
2001 Schumacher/Montoya
2002 Schumacher/Montoya
2003 Schumacher/Montoya
2004 Schumacher/Montoya
2005 Webber/Heidfeld
2006 Webber/Rosberg
2007 Rosberg/Wurz
2008 Rosberg/Nakajima
2009 Rosberg/Nakajima
2010 Barrichello/Hülkenberg
2011 Barrichello/Maldonado
2012 Maldonado/Senna

WDC 3rd: 2002, 2003
WCC 2nd: 2002, 2003
WCC 3rd: 2000, 2001

Today: Williams have had several famous relatives of World Champions drive for them, but show no sign of returning to the glory days of yesterday. No Hill/Villeneuve effect here... In spite of Williams being unable to head hunt drivers for talent only, the resource increase thanks to PDVSA's sponsorship of Maldonado has helped the team become quick again and even won a race this season, only to have a pitlane fire afterwards.

Verdict: Being one of only three teams to survive with the same ownership and name since 2000, Williams are no longer the powerhouse they were. Red Bull now have the Newey they had in the 1990's and their finances mean they have to rely on pay drivers. Maldonado is very fast considering this tag, but Williams are nowhere near the commercial position they still had in 2000.

Benetton had suffered a decline in epic proportions of the performances of the sky blue cars in the late 90's. The Schumacher era was well and truly gone, but thanks to Renault's purchase of the team, the return of Flavio Briatore and the presence of perceived star Fisichella optimism remained. It was during this time Alonso got tied to the team. Shrewd move. The Schumacher era's reprisal was a few years forward, but it did eventually happen. The 2000 season was a hard slog, but Fisichella shone to take three early podiums, then couldn't even get a point in the second half of the season. Development of the car was in tatters for the 3rd year running. Fisichella therefore missed out on what had seemed to be a likely top 5 WDC position.

2000 Fisichella/Wurz
2001 Fisichella/Button
2002 Button/Trulli (as Renault)
2003 Alonso/Trulli
2004 Alonso/Trulli
2005 Alonso/Fisichella
2006 Alonso/Fisichella
2007 Kovalainen/Fisichella
2008 Alonso/Piquet
2009 Alonso/Piquet
2010 Kubica/Petrov
2011 Heidfeld/Petrov
2012 Räikkönen/Grosjean (as Lotus)

WDC: 2005, 2006

WCC: 2005, 2006
WCC 3rd's: 2004, 2007

Today: Lotus have enjoyed a recent upturn in performances. Alonso's championship glories are distant memories in the horizon, but the current car appears to be in such a shape that a Grand Prix victory is certainly within grasp if the team manage to extract the its (the car) full potential. The finances are good enough to pay Kimi Räikkönen's salary at least, but beating Ferrari and McLaren in this year's WCC would still be seen as a huge surprise.

Verdict: The team are in a much stronger position these days than 12 years ago. But it's been a severe peak-and-valley journey. Talent spotting Alonso certainly led to those highs. He is not coming back, so they need someone to take that baton in the future.

Sauber had snapped up Mika Salo following his stunning performances with Ferrari at the high-speed circuits, whilst substituting for Schumacher. Without Salo, Ferrari wouldn't have won the WCC that year, but his performances for Sauber weren't good enough for Peter Sauber, who replaced him with a certain young Finn named Kimi one year afterwards. With Diniz not doing well either, Sauber adopted a new philosophy to nurture young talent, something they do even today post-BMW ownership.

2000 Salo/Diniz
2001 Heidfeld/Räikkönen
2002 Heidfeld/Massa
2003 Heidfeld/Frentzen
2004 Fisichella/Massa
2005 Massa/Villeneuve
2006 Heidfeld/Villeneuve (as BMW Sauber)
2007 Heidfeld/Kubica
2008 Heidfeld/Kubica
2009 Heidfeld/Kubica
2010 Kobayashi/de la Rosa (as Sauber)
2011 Kobayashi/Pérez
2012 Kobayashi/Pérez

WCC 2nd: 2007
WCC 3rd: 2008

Today Sauber are a solid midfield outfit much like the old days, but this time much closer to the front, and can therefore upset the applecart somewhat and deliver podiums. They are nowhere near Kubica's long shot at the 2008 championship under BMW ownership, but can still do a good enough job that an established top driver would help them challenge for race wins even under normal conditions at certain tracks.

Verdict: Future ownership is a bit of a question mark, they have no sugar daddy and Kaltenborn is surely no billionare in her own right? But yeah they are doing much better than in 2000, running closer to the front. Championship positions may look similar, though.

Minardi had done a giant-killing 1999 season, fending off BAR to take the 10th place in the WCC and gaining the FOM money. The fact they managed to beat Prost in the 2000 season helped the team survived a troubled winter that followed, as team owner Gabriele Rumi sold the ship to Paul Stoddart before passing away.

2000 Gené/Mazzacane
2001 Alonso/Marques
2002 Webber/Yoong
2003 Wilson/Verstappen
2004 Bruni/Baumgartner
2005 Albers/Friesacher
2006 Liuzzi/Speed (as Toro Rosso)
2007 Liuzzi/Speed
2008 Vettel/Bourdais
2009 Buemi/Bourdais
2010 Buemi/Alguersuari
2011 Buemi/Alguersuari
2012 Ricciardo/Vergne

Today Toro Rosso, owned by Red Bull, are a serious Formula 1 team that can collect points without half the field falling off. That and the financial security has certainly helped the team lately to get a reputation as a solid force. Unfortunately for them the driver policy is 100 % dictated by Helmut Marko, who really should know better than firing drivers mid-season if they aren't like Vettel. Post-Vettel the drivers coming through have been deemed not good enough for RBR as Webber continues to do well there. Instead of having patience with someone like Alguersuari, Marko wrestles in a new guy without enough experience and with so little testing, Toro Rosso can't therefore really challenge the top 8 as often as they'd liked. The organisation has seen great champions like Alonso and Vettel passing through, so F1 is better off with them.

Verdict Like night and day. Toro Rosso is a serious team capable of doing things now. Won a Grand Prix back in 2008 too.

BAR had had a nightmare 1999 season, in which much-lauded 1997 WDC Jacques Villeneuve didn't even pick up a single point! In the year 2000 it went much better, but the first podium was still elusive, whilst Villeneuve himself was tracked by McLaren and Benetton for moves there. A factory engine deal with Honda proved that British American Tobacco meant business, though.

2000 Villeneuve/Zonta
2001 Villeneuve/Panis
2002 Villeneuve/Panis
2003 Villeneuve/Button
2004 Button/Sato
2005 Button/Sato
2006 Button/Barrichello (as Honda)
2007 Button/Barrichello
2008 Button/Barrichello
2009 Button/Barrichello (as Brawn)
2010 Rosberg/Schumacher (as Mercedes)
2011 Rosberg/Schumacher
2012 Rosberg/Schumacher

WDC: 2009
WDC 3rd: 2004, 2009
WCC: 2009
WCC 2nd: 2004

Today, Mercedes has arrived as the prime owner since a few years back. Jenson Button had been the star driver for many seasons and won a championship for Brawn in 2009. That magic has yet to rub off on the silver cars, but at least Nico Rosberg managed to win the 2012 Chinese Grand Prix, and important occasion for Norbert Haug and the ownership. Schumacher and Brawn haven't been able to reach their previous heights, though.

Verdict: Being a firm factory team and challenging for Grand Prix wins means that the team is in a better position these days.

I firmly hope you enjoyed the read, it was a bit of a cool idea I got to summarize how the franchises have lived on under different names, but all recognizable. Prost and Arrows are no longer with us that took part in the 2000 season, Toyota came and went, whilst Caterham, Marussia and HRT are new franchises that all have changed their names since they entered two years ago.

Much appreciated if you liked it :)

Edited by jeze, 10 July 2012 - 17:09.


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#2 RockyRaccoon68

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 15:26

That was an enjoyable read, thanks! I forgot that Minardi became Toro Rosso and Alonso/Vettel had essentially started with the same team. It's amazing to look back and see how the rule change in 2009 gave Red Bull their big break, even with Newey they were firmly midfield in 2007 and 2008.

Only one error that I noticed, the Enstone team finished 3rd in the WCC in 2007 as well as 2004.

#3 jeze

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 15:29

That was an enjoyable read, thanks! I forgot that Minardi became Toro Rosso and Alonso/Vettel had essentially started with the same team. It's amazing to look back and see how the rule change in 2009 gave Red Bull their big break, even with Newey they were firmly midfield in 2007 and 2008.

Only one error that I noticed, the Enstone team finished 3rd in the WCC in 2007 as well as 2004.


You are correct. I still think of that season as "Ferrari vs. McLaren" so it's easy to forget that Macca were DQ:ed.

#4 HoldenRT

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 15:34

Very good work.

#5 fatd

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 15:36

Enjoyed that, nicely written :up: :up:
That's actually a pretty good summarization of teams' fluctuations in F1.. so far only Ferrari&McLaren are consistently there or thereabout in the championship.

#6 gm914

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 15:37

5 stars! That was great.

#7 DrProzac

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 16:42

Nice post :up:

#8 NorthernStar

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 16:44

Very enjoyable read. Great work! :up:

#9 jeze

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 16:50

Thanks :up:

#10 PayasYouRace

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 17:04

That was a very enjoyable read. :up:

You forgot Williams WCC 2nd and 3rd places in the early BMW years.

#11 Dispenser89

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 17:19

:up: Very enjoyable read and great summary of the teams' fortunes. Thanks for writing it up.

#12 schumimercamg

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 18:13

Great post, thank you.

#13 stewie

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 18:16

Excellent. Well done.

#14 Craven Morehead

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 18:30

It's stuff like this that keeps me coming back to this BB. :up:

#15 jeze

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 21:23

It's stuff like this that keeps me coming back to this BB. :up:


Welcome to the buddy list :up:

#16 Craven Morehead

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 06:08

cheers :)

#17 karne

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 07:36

Oh wow! This list is amazing! :love:

So interesting to see how everyone went!

#18 wingwalker

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 08:56

Not much to add, but that was a great read, thanks.

#19 jcbc3

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 09:10

Hamilton holding McLaren to ransom? A bit too subjective for my liking.

But a :up: for the effort.

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#20 mkoscevic

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 09:24

Great read jeze! :up:

#21 king_crud

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 09:25

excellent read

#22 aditya-now

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 09:38

It's stuff like this that keeps me coming back to this BB. :up:


Exactly, that's the real stuff!

Thanks a lot for your time and diligent research, Jeze!


#23 sopa

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 10:11

Reading the descriptions in the opening post, I have to say McLaren from 2000 sounds really similar to Red Bull in 2012. Both teams had just won two WDC's in a row with Adrian Newey as chief designer and with arguably the best qualifying driver in the field in Hakkinen and Vettel respectively. Remember, how many poles did Hakkinen get in 1999? Percentage-wise almost like Vettel last year. Also both teams had just a few years earlier had a breakthrough in performance after major rules changes in 1998 and 2009 respectively, which elevated them into title contention.

Future? After two consecutive WDC's McLaren faded off somewhat. Let's see if Red Bull can keep it up.

#24 Disgrace

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 01:11

Interesting thread, appreciate the time and effort into your post jeze.

I would say another interesting trend is the dwindled number of engine suppliers since 2000. Being with the right engine was crucial, much to the dismay of Williams and Benetton after Renault departed. The latter were still running developments of the 1997 Renault engine in 2000.

#25 V8 Fireworks

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 02:17

Also no longer a factory team, since Mercedes left.

McLaren is a larger volume elite supercar manufacturer now with solid finances, so I would say better off.

I don't understand why the back of the rear wing is plain back instead of the classy 80s style "McLaren" text logo or a Union Jack plastered across it.

As soon as Vodafone leaves (very soon!?) and so too Mercedes, and they go to an orange scheme with their own engine, they really will be f1 absolute elite.

Of course the on track lack of dominance has been utterly disappointing for McLaren, Hamilton and British fans. The driver is easily capable to take 12 wins per season, but the team has badly failed again and again.

#26 V8 Fireworks

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 02:22

I would say another interesting trend is the dwindled number of engine suppliers since 2000.

The requirement for works and customer teams to have equal engines has been an FIA masterstroke IMO. :up: :up:

Hispania might still be slow but their 7 year old Cosworths are not that horrible, and all the other teams have 7 year old engines too. Whilst Minardi was all alone with their 5 year old Cosworths shabbily assembled in their own workshop while Ferrari had a new engine every season - much tougher disadvantage.

#27 Zippel

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 02:39

Interesting thread, appreciate the time and effort into your post jeze.

I would say another interesting trend is the dwindled number of engine suppliers since 2000. Being with the right engine was crucial, much to the dismay of Williams and Benetton after Renault departed. The latter were still running developments of the 1997 Renault engine in 2000.



After Renault bought Benetton in the first half of 2000, they did start supplying them with different engine specs, including a qualifying engine for Fisichella. Wurz was very much on the outer after Briatore resumed control and I recall reading there was a giant screen between the two sides of the garage.

#28 Zippel

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 02:49

I loved your analysis Jeze. :up:

Sauber had snapped up Mika Salo following his stunning performances with Ferrari at the high-speed circuits, whilst substituting for Schumacher. Without Salo, Ferrari wouldn't have won the WCC that year, but his performances for Sauber weren't good enough for Peter Sauber, who replaced him with a certain young Finn named Kimi one year afterwards. With Diniz not doing well either, Sauber adopted a new philosophy to nurture young talent, something they do even today post-BMW ownership.


This isn't entirely accurate. Salo was offered a nice Toyota deal and thought it best to take that for his long term future, Sauber was not looking to get rid of him at all. Diniz I'm not so sure about but he came with a lot of money. I think Diniz realised he wasn't getting any further up the grid than Sauber and moved to management.

Also Raikkenon was given the 2nd seat in 2001 after a number of experienced drivers opted for other opportunities. Sauber was looking to grab an experienced driver along side Heidfeld (Zonta, Panis, Wurz, etc) but no one that fitted the bill was interested. Redbull wanted Bernoldi in the 2nd seat but Sauber refused for some reason and insisted if it was going to be an inexperienced driver it will be Kimi. Turned out to be a masterstroke both in results and financially.

#29 V8 Fireworks

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 04:51

Redbull wanted Bernoldi in the 2nd seat

Oh dear...

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The Red Bull folks do seem terribly clever now, but really are they ??!!... insisting on such superstars as Bernoldi and Klien (decent driver, perhaps not Alonso class though).

#30 LoudHoward

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 05:06

It's amazing to look back and see how the rule change in 2009 gave Red Bull their big break, even with Newey they were firmly midfield in 2007 and 2008.


Perhaps, though I think there were hints in 2007 and 2008 that they were getting their act together. They were well behind in development by the end of 2006, and the '07 car was hugely unreliable but they seemed to start getting their aero sorted by the end of the season (they had a floor update right at the end of the year that had Webber nibbling at the back of the Ferraris and McLarens by Brazil). 2008 the car was excellent aerodynamically (Silverstone!), and they got their reliability sorted at the same time. I suppose it's easy to look back though.

Undoubtably the rule changes gave them a great opportunity but the hints were there that they were coming on strong regardless. I think it was Singapore '09 when they got their mechanical grip sorted out (and the aero upgrade at Silvy ofcourse), and it's been game on for them ever since.