Red Bull is taking extraordinary measures to ensure there is no favoritism shown towards Max Verstappen

Christian Horner, from Red Bull, has provided insights into the measures the team is implementing to ensure equal treatment for both their drivers in the championship battle.

As the 2023 F1 Championship progresses with five races completed, it is becoming evident that the title fight is primarily between the Red Bull teammates. Defending World Champion Max Verstappen has secured three victories, while his teammate Sergio Perez has triumphed in the remaining two races.

Although Perez has not been a consistent contender for the championship in his previous two seasons with Red Bull, he has started the 2023 season impressively. Both of his wins have come under immense pressure from Verstappen, showcasing his ability to withstand the challenges posed by his teammate.

Thus far, the competition for dominance between the two drivers has been harmonious. Additionally, Horner has disclosed that Red Bull is putting in significant effort to guarantee that the rivalry between the drivers remains equitable and impartial.

“I think it’s about just being transparent and talking things through,” Horner told the Financial Times when asked about how he handles such a tense situation between two equally-matched drivers.

It’s a situation Horner has had to deal with before, such as a decade ago when Sebastian Vettel set about asserting himself over Mark Webber, or when Verstappen first arrived at Red Bull alongside the more experienced Daniel Ricciardo.

“Going through what the expectations are and reminding them that they drive for a team and they represent every team member when they’re driving their cars, and they represent all the partners that we represent as well. It’s not just about them.”

In a light-hearted manner, Horner shared that although his drivers strive to please off-track, once the adrenaline kicks in during the race, a whole new dynamic emerges.

“Of course, in a briefing or in a meeting they take that in but, as soon as they put a crash helmet on, I think it goes straight out the other ear,” horner said.

“But, you could see on Sunday [in Miami], the respect that there was between the two drivers in the way that they raced with each other, that they were hard but fair and gave each other enough space, which is what we asked.”

The team principal of Red Bull expressed that his primary focus lies in outperforming the other nine teams to clinch the Constructors’ trophy, placing it above the Drivers’ Championship in terms of significance, despite the greater prestige associated with the Drivers’ title.

“In F1, you’ve got two championships – the Constructors’ Championship, which is where the money is distributed, whether the money flowing into the sport which Stefano [Domenicali, F1 CEO] pays out on,” he said.

“We will get not one dollar for winning the Drivers’ World Championship. Every bonus payable in the team is not on a driver’s bonus, or related to a Drivers’ Championship

“So, from a team point of view, what we want to do is to make sure we give them both equality and we go to pains to do that – to the point that we, even from weekend to weekend, alternate who pulls out the garage first or who talks in the debrief alternates. That’s something that we’ve become accustomed to over the years working with competitive drivers.

“I think every single member of the team would say the Constructors’ Championship, from a fiscal point of view, [is more important] because that’s where we are gauged against our fellow teams and that has the biggest financial impact on the team. But, from an emotional point of view, a fan’s or racer’s point of view, it’s obviously the Drivers’ Championship just has that extra attachment to it.”