McLaren: Seeing floor pictures made them say ‘hats off to Red Bull’

Michelle Foster
Red Bull driver Sergio Perez crashes in qualifying at the Monaco Grand Prix. Monte Carlo, May 2023.

Red Bull's Sergio Perez crashes in qualifying at the Monaco Grand Prix. Monte Carlo, May 2023.

Given an eagle-eyed view of Red Bull’s floor and its vortexes, McLaren team boss Andrea Stella says all he can say after examining those photographs is “hats off to Red Bull”.

Last time out in Monaco, Sergio Perez gave Red Bull’s rivals the perfect opportunity to have a close up look at the race-winning RB19’s floor when he crashed in qualifying with his car lifted into the air on a crane.

Photographers were quickly on the scene to snap shots of the floor, photos Red Bull’s rivals have since been pouring over.

Stella admits while he has had a look, McLaren’s aerodynamicists have been examining it in detail.

“Myself, personally,” Stella said, “I spent some time, but the 100 aerodynamicists at McLaren will be spending a little bit more time.

“It’s very interesting indeed and also shows the complexity and the quality of their development.”

The Italian says it’s no wonder from what he’s seen that Red Bull have won 23 of the 28 races in F1’s ground effect aerodynamic era.

“So, to be honest,” he added, “when I saw it, I said hats off to Red Bull. I can understand why they have this kind of performance.” recommends

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As Sky Sports’ pit lane reporter Ted Kravitz put it, “even the little guide fences have got guide fences of their own on the Red Bull” with the Briton labelling the RB19’s floor a “thing of wonder and beauty”.

But while it is all good and well having the photographs of the floors, Mercedes’ too after Lewis Hamilton crashed in FP3 in Monaco, Ferrari team boss Fred Vasseur concedes copying the race-winning design is easier said than done.

“I think that we all have a lot of pictures of the other cars,” said the Frenchman, “but then it’s quite difficult or even impossible to try to copy something.”

“It’s more a global concept than something else,” he explained, “and you can’t copy just one part of the car.”

Mike Krack agrees that all the teams take note of the other designs, the Aston Martin team boss having a look at the revised Ferrari sidepods on Friday morning.

“You’re always looking at the competitors, what is new, new parts,” he said. “I was also in front of the Ferrari garage this morning. It’s always the same.”

And while Red Bull weren’t too happy that their car’s floor was on display for the world to see, motorsport advisor Helmut Marko says he’s not too worried as it’s not just the floor that’s behind the RB19’s success story.

“It’s not just the floor,” he told “That floor has to work well with the front wing and the rear of the car, for example. It’s about all those things together and that makes it much more complex than just the floor.”

Red Bull have run rampant over their rivals this season with six wins in six races to go along with last year’s 17 from 22 in the new ground-effect aerodynamic era.