Daniel Ricciardo amused by Red Bull RB20 amid chilling ‘completely crush’ verdict

Jamie Woodhouse
Max Verstappen leaves the garage in F1 testing.

Max Verstappen leaves the garage.

Mention of the unique Red Bull RB20 design drew laughter out of Daniel Ricciardo, who said this is a team which must not just beat, but “completely crush” the competition.

Red Bull already had their rivals on tenterhooks heading into F1 2024 after winning a remarkable 21 of the 22 grands prix held last season, with the RB20 expected to be a further evolution of the design which has so far dominated F1’s ground effect era.

The success of this concept can be seen in the gradual transition from much of the grid towards Red Bull’s, but the reigning double champions have now gone and moved the goalposts with their F1 2024 creation.

Red Bull RB20 signals ‘completely crush’ rivals intention

Additional reporting by Thomas Maher

Red Bull has gone down a different route with the design of their hotly-anticipated RB20, one which sees it share surprising similarities to the failed Mercedes ‘zeropod’ concept which they decided to axe after the 2023 season-opener.

When speaking to media including PlanetF1.com’s Thomas Maher, the mention of the RB20 drew a chuckle out of Ricciardo, who started 2023 as Red Bull’s reserve driver before being assigned to their second team, where he remains for F1 2024, now known as RB.

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Ricciardo explained his surprise reaction is a response to him feeling like beating the competition is not enough. Rather than take the RB19 a step further, Red Bull had to go back to the drawing board and create an RB20 designed to “completely crush” the rest.

“I laugh because I’m surprised, but I’m not,” said Ricciardo.

“I feel it’s a team that operates at its best when they’re winning. I feel like when they’re winning, it’s like they want to just completely crush the competition.

“It’s not like: ‘Okay, now we’re winning. Let’s go on holiday.’ It’s like: ‘Let’s really put our feet down.’ That’s where I think they’ve come out this year. [After] the most dominant season in ’23, now they come out with a car that I think had everyone like, ‘Wow’.

“I feel they’ve had the most updates of anyone, so that’s really saying something.”

Ricciardo will hope to use F1 2024 as a means to put himself in prime position to drive the RB20’s successor, with Sergio Perez’s current Red Bull contract up at the end of 2024.

Read next: Mercedes would ‘deeply love’ to solve mystery of new Red Bull RB20 feature