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AlphaTauri plays down talk of running Red Bull RB19 F1 clone in 2024

AlphaTauri has played down talk that it could run a clone RB19 in Formula 1 next year off the back of planned closer ties with Red Bull.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19, Liam Lawson, AlphaTauri AT04

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19, Liam Lawson, AlphaTauri AT04

Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

As part of a shake-up at AlphaTauri agreed by its energy drinks owners earlier this year, the squad has been pushed to forge closer ties with Red Bull in a bid to lift its competitive fortunes under a new identity. 

This shift in stance will manifest itself in eventually having more aero staff based in the UK at a new facility that is being lined up, as well as taking more customer parts off sister team Red Bull for its 2024 challenger. 

The increased synergy with Red Bull prompted suggestions earlier in the year that the door was open for the squad to effectively run a clone RB19 customer car. 

However, technical director Jody Egginton has played down talk of going that far as he said that the number of parts that the squad would take from Red Bull would not be much different to what it has done in the past. 

“Since we started synergy in 2019, the parts we've selected off the menu have been different, and for next year will be slightly different again,” he said. 

“Relative to this year, a bit more. Relative to a couple of the previous years, probably about the same.

“At the end of the day, there's a notional value consideration for customer teams. So, when you start purchasing parts from supplying teams, you've got to keep an eye on the budget. But we'll maximise what's available to us as we try to do as much as we can.” 

Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri AT04, Liam Lawson, AlphaTauri AT04

Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri AT04, Liam Lawson, AlphaTauri AT04

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

While talk of AlphaTauri forging closer ties with Red Bull attracted headlines earlier in the year, Egginton does not think there is anything dramatically new about its processes – as it has always constantly evaluated what parts it did and did not want to take. 

“I've read on occasions how it is communicated through the press, but the bottom line is, there are three sets of regulations, sporting, technical, and financial. [Red Bull] headquarters are saying maximise what you can do. 

“It has become a bit more public lately, for various reasons, and we're encouraged to look at everything and explore every area.  But there'll be some things that we can't take.

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"It has become a bit more of a thing. We're less competitive, so people are saying, you're not quick enough, what are you doing? 

“In 2020 and 2021, when the car was competitive, it wasn't really talked about. We took some Red Bull bits, so be it.  

“So yeah, we're being encouraged. But it's not really a case of control. But it's good to know that the guys in headquarters have got our back and are encouraging both teams to really maximise what they can do under the regulations.” 

Egginton said no decision had been taken on whether the Red Bull parts AlphaTauri took would be year old or current in 2024, but he is clear that the squad is already well advanced on its own new chassis. 

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

“At the end of the day, our aerodynamic concept, although we haven't got the highest performing car on the grid, it's not standout different to anybody else,” he said. 

“We know which way we want to go. And also, there's some optimisation and other things, but primarily we're aero-driven.  

“So, the chassis will be substantially different. But in terms of concept change, we know which way we're going. We're reasonably aligned with what direction other teams are going as well. We've just got to be more successful in achieving those objectives.”

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