Red Bull felt 2022 title success earned as chief engineer compares to Brazil 2010

Jamie Woodhouse
Max Verstappen in the Red Bull RB18. Abu Dhabi, November 2022. F1 driver numbers

Max Verstappen at the wheel of the Red Bull RB18. Abu Dhabi, November 2022.

With Red Bull firmly back atop the Formula 1 mountain, chief engineer Paul Monaghan spoke of their 2022 success feeling earned.

Red Bull came firing out of the blocks at the start of this new regulatory era in Formula 1, winning 17 of the 22 rounds that made up the 2022 season.

Max Verstappen won 15 of those, a new record for a single Formula 1 season, with the other two going to Sergio Perez.

The final standings saw Verstappen 146 points clear of runner-up Charles Leclerc, with Red Bull taking their first Constructors’ title since 2013 with a 205-point margin over Ferrari.

Reacting after Verstappen sealed his second Drivers’ title in Japan, Monaghan said that this title felt like the reward for being successful across the season, while compared to a season like 2010, when Red Bull won their first Constructors’ title, this one was more clear-cut deserved.

Asked on the F1 Nation podcast how the feeling of this title compares to the past ones, Monaghan replied: “Different, equally as satisfying. I remember the first Constructors’ Championship, Brazil 2010, there wasn’t a belief that we could get there, it was sort of an expectation, and it was then a massive relief.

“This one, it feels a bit more like we’ve earned it and we’re rightfully there, as opposed to being a little bit lucky, which may sound a bit strange, but you’ve asked me the question. That’s how I answer it.

“So thrilled for everybody that works for the team, supports the team, Honda. There’s a load of people back in Milton Keynes who do wonderful work. What a team effort, we’ve taken on one of the biggest car manufacturers in the world [Ferrari] and beaten them.”

Red Bull in the early stages of the season benefitted from Ferrari’s inability to make the pace of their F1-75 count, but particularly in the second-half of the season, Red Bull’s RB18 wrestled away the advantage in terms of car performance.

After the Dutch GP, Monaghan started to feel like Red Bull were favourites for the titles, but he never took winning them for granted at any stage.

Asked at what stage Red Bull felt like title favourites, Monaghan replied: “Netherlands. Monza I think we were a little bit fortunate up until then. You don’t want to let it get away from yourself, you think ‘we’ve really got to mess up if we’re going to fall over’.

“But never take it for granted, Charles is a hell of a driver. In answer to your question, no , I never really felt it was in the bag until it is.”

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