Max is the man Hamilton fears the most, says Horner

Elena Summers
February 8, 2019

Honda had a troubled time with McLaren before a separation and teaming up with Red Bull-owned Toro Rosso a year ago. "I will always try to get the best out of myself and hopefully that is enough".

"Red Bull Technology has been working with Honda for 12 months, so we've had a good look at their evolution and they're on a good way", he said.

Ricciardo's last race for Red Bull was in late November in Abu Dhabi but he could only link up with his new team now because his former employer wouldn't release him. "Financial regulations and governance are an enormously hard thing to police fairly and we are waiting to see how they do that".

"I don't think he lacks anything that they have". They have settled on a concept that for the first time since their re-entry into Formula 1 has continued from one season to the next without it being a completely clean sheet of paper.

The Milton Keynes-based outfit has joined forces with the Japanese engine supplier this season after its 11-year relationship with ex-engine partners Renault ended in a messy divorce.

"Of course it depends on the strength of the competition, but on their own data, Honda has made some nice progress", Horner added.

But although there are no guarantees about the durability of the Honda power unit that it will start the season with, Horner says he would not be too upset if his team was forced to take extra power units in 2019.

"It's a huge challenge to do the season on three engines", he said.

"We would prefer constant development, even if it means we would have to put up with one or two penalties", he said.

"As we saw a year ago, the impact of those penalties at the right venues can be fairly minimal".

"I think it's a very different scenario".

Horner said it would be "very interesting" to see how Charles Leclerc gets on in his first season at Ferrari, following his promotion from Sauber.

"An very bad lot of frustration was borne out of that". An bad lot of frustration has borne out of that, and the management within Renault has been different to what it was when we started the relationship. "We're extremely hopeful the performance will be a step from where we've been the last few years".

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