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Red Bull Racing’s 2016 F1 Challenger – the RB12

Red Bull Racing RB12 launch

Red Bull released the first images of its 2016 Formula One title challenger, the RB12, ahead of debuting the car on track at the opening day of pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya.

The team released studio photos via its various media channels moments before the RB12 hit the track with Daniel Ricciardo at the wheel. Three-time race winner Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat will race the RB12 this year.

Following very troubled 2015 season, the team will be hoping that the TAG Heuer-badged Renault powered RB12 will have what it takes to return to its former glory once again. The team claimed four successive titles between 2010 and 2013 but quickly fell behind when the F1 introduced V6 power units in 2014. The 2015 F1 season held only two podiums for the team and saw them finishing fourth in the constructor standings.

Red Bull Racing RB12 launchA late decision to stick with Renault power – albeit under the guise of new Red Bull partner Tag Heuer – after approaching the three other engine suppliers looking to switch for 2016, has the team on a back foot ahead of the start of the season.

Team boss Christian Horner: “Obviously the late engine decision last year was a challenge but we found a solution in time and the whole team has worked incredibly hard to recover over the winter.

“Therefore, we’re looking to build on the significant progress we made in the second half of 2015 and to carry that momentum into the early races of this season.

Red Bull Racing RB12 launch“My hopes for this season are that we genuinely make progress from where we were last year; that we get our heads down and we really develop the car well and hopefully with some performance coming on the power unit side as well, that will allow us to get closer to some of our immediate rivals.”

According to chief technical officer Adrian Newey development on the RB12 was focussed around developing a cohesive package for all the parts. “I’m often asked what area of the car I’m most pleased with, but with the stable regulations we have at the moment it’s difficult to find any major new areas to exploit,” Newey said of the RB12.

“Therefore, what we’ve really tried to concentrate on with this car is getting a cohesive package for all the parts – the suspension, the chassis dynamics, aerodynamics – that they all work together in harmony.

“I think we’ve managed to build on the lessons of last year and all the indications from our simulations suggest that this year’s chassis should be strong.”

Red Bull Racing RB12 launchChief engineering officer Rob Marshall hopes that the RB12 can win some races this year: “With the RB12, we are optimistic that we have made some good gains, but the difficulty is the wind tunnel and CFD numbers we’re seeing are our numbers and unless you can see everyone else’s numbers you don’t know where you are. We are happy that we are going in the right direction from our own point of view, but we won’t know until Melbourne.

“As far as this car is concerned, I hope we can win some races. That might sound farfetched after last year, where we struggled at the beginning of the year, but I hope this year we can make a bit of a step power-wise and that will level the playing field a bit.”

RB12 Photo Credits: Red Bull Racing


About Adele Groenendaal

Some say she's Murray Walker's illegitimate offspring. Others say she was a right wheel-gunner for the Lotus F1 team. All we know is Adele has high octane fuel running through her veins and Formula One is her passion. Follow Adele on Twitter @aprilrain500

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