Christian Horner does not want to get carried away: “You’re as good as your last race”

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Labelled as the season favourites from testing onwards, Red Bull emerged victorious from the first race of the season without much effort.

Asked about the Bahrain Grand Prix, Christian Horner did not get overly comfortable with the first victory.

“I think, first race of the season, there’s always an element of nerves because it’s the first time you’re running two cars and there’s so many things that can go wrong. So a phenomenal performance by the whole team back at base to provide a competitive car like we’ve got to start here,” said the Red Bull team boss in his post-race media session.

“We focused probably a little more on the race than we did on qualifying and that paid its dividends today. We were able to run on the softer compound, particularly in the middle part of the race, and still have the durability. So it was a well-executed grand prix. After last year, coming away with zero points, to have 43 on the board feels like a good response.”

With Ferrari failing to complete the first race of the season with Leclerc and Mercedes looking for new changes for a troubled car, it looks like F1 has a season ahead with little to fight for the top positions.

“You never know. I think the problem is we’ve only got one data set which is at this track, so we’re not taking anything for granted.

“So let’s see Jeddah in two weeks, Melbourne after that. I think once we’ve got two or three circuits under our belt, we’ll get a much better picture of the strengths and weaknesses of our car and our opposition.

“But certainly a very healthy start and a very well-executed race to bring in those points.”

With Fernando Alonso’s podium, Red Bull found itself with an unexpected rival. A good surprise, said Horner, who praised the Spanish driver.

“They looked very strong in the race today. It was enjoyable to see Fernando up there – it gives the 40-somethings hope that there’s life in the old boy yet. And he raced very well. He’s so, so competitive and the Aston looks a good car.

“Based on the result of one race, you’d have to say they were the second strongest team here.”

The world will see in the coming races how much Aston Martin will be able to live up to expectations. Expectations that are earned with the time of a race, but very tricky to maintain over a sustained period of time. After all, as Horner himself said

“People have a very short memory in this business. You’re as good as your last race. Today we’re heroes, tomorrow it could be Ferrari, it could be Mercedes, it could be Aston Martin.”

Photo: @redbullracing