Red Bull driver programme chief Dr Helmut Marko has said talk of a new suspension design for his team arriving at Imola is “nonsense”.
The reports that began to surface stated Red Bull would take an upgraded rear suspension to the Made in Italy and Emilia Romagna Grand Prix which had the potential to improve their already strong RB16B considerably.
But Marko has now quashed those rumours.
“This is total nonsense. We already competed with this ‘mysterious’ wheel suspension at the start in Bahrain,” he told Sport1.
“It is also nothing special, but we had to design it because we needed a suspension that optimally fits the extremely narrow and tight rear that we have built around the new, smaller and more compact Honda engine this season.”
Red Bull came out of the blocks strongly this season as Max Verstappen topped every practice session and then took pole position for the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Ultimately though, Mercedes were able to get Sir Lewis Hamilton ahead on track, and although Verstappen passed the Briton in the closing stages, he was told to give the place back for breaching track limits.
Hamilton then held on to start the season with victory and while it still stings a little for Marko, he is focusing more on how impressive his team were in Bahrain.
“I still lick the wounds,” Marko said.
“However, compared to last season it is rather small scratches because we are on a par with Mercedes, the fastest team. That was our goal. We are definitely on the right track.
“I don’t know what Mercedes are developing. But we are relying on the package we had in Bahrain and we simply did not make maximum use of it there.”
Last season, Mercedes were in fine form at Imola’s Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari as Valtteri Bottas took pole position before Hamilton won the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix ahead of Bottas in a Mercedes one-two finish.
This time around though, the Silver Arrows fear they will be on the back foot against Red Bull at this venue.