F1i continues to look back over the whole of the 2017 Formula 1 world championship season team-by-team and driver-by-driver. Today, it’s Red Bull’s turn in the spotlight.
When Red Bull unveiled the RB13 at the beginning of 2017, the drivers were asked if they were superstitious about the number. They said no, but maybe they should have been. This year’s chassis managed to finish on the podium 13 times, but it also retired on 13 occasions.
Team principal Christian Horner estimated that Renault engine unreliability had cost the team around 160 championship points. It suffered more retirements than Mercedes and Ferrari combined, and as a result Red Bull dropped to third place in the constructors standings this year – and a long way behind Ferrari.
Against that background, what Red Bull actually did achieve was genuinely impressive. Every time the RB13 saw the chequered flag this year, it did so in the points. Daniel Ricciardo took the team’s first victory of the year in Azerbaijan, and Max Verstappen took two more wins in Malaysia and Mexico toward the end of the year.
But it’s the misses that are likely to stick in the team’s gullet for some time to come. The hydraulics failure in Abu Dhabi that cost Ricciardo fourth place in the drivers standings was a particularly bitter pill to swallow.
Read more: Daniel Ricciardo