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Red Bull "brave" to change F1 car concept for 2024, says Perez

Sergio Perez has praised Red Bull's bravery in being so aggressive with its new RB20 car following a dominant 2023 Formula 1 season.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

Red Bull was the last F1 team to unveil its 2024 challenger last week, with the design featuring several bold ideas – especially around the sidepod and engine cover area.

The squad has seemingly drawn inspiration from other outfits, including Mercedes' bodywork with gulleys running from the halo through the top of the engine cover.

After winning 21 out of 22 grands prix last year, Red Bull developed the RB20 to the extent that Perez has referred to it as a new "concept" rather than just an evolutionary step.

PLUS: The Mercedes-like design decisions in Red Bull's follow-up to an F1 world-beater

Asked if he was surprised to see elements of Mercedes design on the new machine, Perez admitted: "Ah, yes. A bit.

"But at the same time, it just shows how much this team is looking to move forward and pushing all the boundaries. It's really great to see.

"It just shows the hunger that there is in this team. You know, we had such a dominant car last year that you wouldn't imagine us changing the concept as much, and I think it's really brave from Red Bull to do that."

While last year's RB19 was efficient all round, Perez said one area in particular had been improved.

"Essentially our low-speed seems to be looking in a better window, but obviously until we hit the track we will not know," he added.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

After recording a 290-point deficit to team-mate Max Verstappen and failing to take any victories in the last 18 rounds of the past season, the Mexican knows he needs better performances to keep Red Bull's trust from 2025 onwards.

"We had some issues as the car was developing," he explained about last year's hardship.

"And the way we were trying to improve those issues meant that we were just taking performance out of the car, and not necessarily going faster. Making it more comfortable is not necessarily faster."

Perez said those issues have now been understood and is bullish about his chances going into his 14th campaign in F1, claiming: "I do expect to be at my best for this year."

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When asked if he thought he could fight for the championship or if Verstappen was on another planet for everyone, the veteran was more cautious.

"We haven't started the year, we all have the same opportunities," he said.

"I think the target for all of us is to win the championship."

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