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Marko points out copycat tactics among F1 rivals

Marko points out copycat tactics among F1 rivals
© Reuters
Red Bull's competitors are "copying" their technical innovations to climb into contention, reveals the Formula 1 team's advisor, Dr. Helmut Marko.

Red Bull's competitors are "copying" their technical innovations to climb into contention, reveals the Formula 1 team's advisor, Dr. Helmut Marko.

Both Ferrari and McLaren have closed the gap on Red Bull's supremacy lately, with Ferrari's drivers achieving victories this year and Lando Norris from McLaren capturing his inaugural Formula 1 triumph.

"We are now in our third year with the current regulations, and people are copying," Marko disclosed to the Osterreich newspaper.

A key aspect of technical mimicry, as reported by Germany's Auto Motor und Sport, involves emulating Red Bull's method of reducing the rear of the car on straights - a technique they pioneered right from the beginning of the current rules cycle in 2022.

"This resulted in a sometimes dramatic top speed advantage," stated correspondent Michael Schmidt. "The entire DRS effect was also geared towards this."

Schmidt added: "It was not until the third year that the competition reacted. Ferrari, Mercedes, Haas and Toro Rosso (Racing Bulls) now have similar systems."

"Ferrari's is said to be even better than the (Red Bull) original," he noted further.

This approach allows teams to implement incredibly precise modifications to ride-height, which is vital under the ground effect regulations.

"We're talking about differences of half a millimeter in the setup," an unnamed team principal acknowledged.

Interestingly, Schmidt clarified that McLaren has not yet managed to implement a comparable system.

"McLaren, Aston Martin, Williams, Sauber and Alpine are still using conventional systems," he pointed out.

McLaren's team leader, Andrea Stella, confirmed, "We do not have an explicit lowering system, which can be critical with low ground clearance. You can quickly lose downforce in places where you don't want it."

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