| SHANGHAI, April 16
SHANGHAI, April 16 Once-dominant Formula One
champions Red Bull are considering their technical options after
failing to make the podium for the second race out of three so
far this season.
Team principal Christian Horner told reporters after the
weekend's Chinese Grand Prix that they could go down a similar
route to Mercedes whose controversial rear wing has been
Mercedes' German driver Nico Rosberg took a crushing first
grand prix win, and a first for a works Mercedes team since
1955, in Shanghai after securing a first pole position by a
"I think there's been a lot said and a lot of fuss about it
(the wing)," Horner said. "They've optimised and capitalised on
it so inevitably now we'll all pursue our own solutions.
Red Bull, now 24 points behind leaders McLaren, had held off
doing anything while seeking a definitive clarification - which
came in China when a formal protest by Lotus came to nothing.
Asked how long it might take Red Bull to get the development
on the car, Horner was vague: "I think first of all, like any
component, it has to earn a place on the car as a package," he
"It's not a given that on everybody's car it's bolt-on lap
The Mercedes wing contains slots on the inside of the
endplates that are opened when the driver-activated drag
reduction system (DRS) is used for extra speed within defined
zones to aid overtaking.
The slots channel air through internal pipes to the front of
the car which increases aerodynamic downforce.
Red Bull won 12 of last year's 19 races, with double world
champion Sebastian Vettel taking 11 victories, and secured a
record 18 poles.
Vettel finished second in the Melbourne season-opener but
was 11th in Malaysia and fifth on Sunday while Australian team
mate Mark Webber has had three successive fourth places. Neither
has yet appeared on the front row of the starting grid.
In China, they went for different exhaust specifications,
with Vettel opting to revert to one that he had used in
"There are some characteristics about the upgraded car that
weren't particularly suited to his style of driving which is to
carry a lot of speed into the corner," Horner said of the
"But the decision to come here with two different cars was
very much (designer) Adrian (Newey) and the technical decision
because we want to make sure we get a direction and a clear
comparison and we've had that.
"It's been a really useful exercise this weekend... now
we've got an awful lot of information through three days of
running to settle on a direction moving forward."
Asked whether the team would continue with the split
strategy, Horner said the real challenge was to get the
characteristics of both solutions on a single car but Bahrain
this weekend might see something similar.
"We just need to sort out qualifying now," he said. "We know
we've got good race pace... I think if we can just get
qualifying sorted then we can make a significant step forward."
(Editing by John O'Brien)