Christian Horner has responded to Lewis Hamilton’s claim that the RB19 is one of the most dominant cars in F1 history.
Hamilton and fast cars have long been associated together given the seven-time World Champion’s history in the sport but it seems the 38-year-old believes the fastest car in recent memory belongs to a rival team, Red Bull.
Following on from the RB18’s success, the RB19 has further increased the gap between Red Bull and the chasing field with the team securing consecutive one-twos at the opening two races this season.
Additional reporting by Michael Lamonato
As such, Hamilton commented that it was the fastest car he had seen in his 17 years on the grid.
“I’ve definitely never seen a car so fast,” he said following the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. “I think when we were fast, we weren’t that fast. I think it’s the fastest car I’ve seen, especially compared to the rest.”
Horner has now responded to these claims, describing them as “flattering” especially from a driver with the recent history of Hamilton.
“Well it’s obviously very flattering, particularly considering some of the cars that Lewis has driven in recent history,” Horner said ahead of the Australian Grand Prix.
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“We’ve got a great car. [The] RB19 is a fantastic starting point for the season for us and to achieve two one-two finishes in the first few races is more than we could have ever expected coming into this season.
“We’re conscious it’s a very long season, there’s still 21 races to go and six sprint races and [we know there will be] big updates coming from others in the coming weeks as we head back to Europe. So there’s still an awfully long way to go.”
Despite Horner’s modesty and attempt to play down his team’s superiority, he could not help but admit he had been surprised by the gap between themselves and the rest of the chasing field. In every race so far, a Red Bull car has finished at least 15 seconds ahead of every other team.
“In all honesty yes,” he responded when asked if was surprised by the gap. “We see that some teams made a step forward, some haven’t but that’s going to change from circuit to circuit, venue to venue.
“I’ve always said it’s going to take three or four races to get a real pattern as to what is the actual form book for the season.”