Vettel Expected to Top 2008 Performances
Having already won his first race in the Great Circle – Monza 2008 – the young German is expected to improve his performances at Red Bull. Why? As Horner himself admitted, only intelligent drivers will manage to overcome the plenitude of changes introduced by the FIA in 2009: slick tires, new aerodynamic behavior of the cars and the Kinetic Energy Recovery System. And Vettel is one of the brightest ones out there, believes his new team manager.
“He's a bright young man, which will be invaluable when it comes to all the complications of the new cars. The drivers will be busy this year, understanding the way KERS works, the way KERS will interact with the braking systems, the adjustable wings and the way the slick tires can be used - all this means that things augur well for Sebastian,” argued Horner in an interview for Motor Sport magazine.
“This year the drivers will have a greater input, and they will have to do the right things at the right time. There's a lot more going on in the car and they will have to be on top of it all. The more intelligent driver will win through; that's always been the case, and in some ways we're going back to the days when the driver played a bigger role. Sebastian will only get better and stronger - he's still very young, and this will be an interesting stage of his career,” added the RBR boss.
As for the use of KERS, Vettel may have to wait longer until actually run it, as the RBR officials are yet to decide whether they will use the unit in Australia or not. Although they will use Renault's unit as part of their engine package for 2009, RBR should take the time to first test the new system before its actual use in a race.
“We will only run KERS on the race car when it earns this place there, just as we would with any other new development. We have to wait and see if it proves its worth in testing and then decide whether or not we run it at the first race in Melbourne,” concluded Horner.