16 August 2020 14:34

Pole position will be possible for Red Bull once the FIA bans 'party mode' engine settings.

max verstappen

Pole position will be possible for Red Bull once the FIA bans 'party mode' engine settings. That is the view of Dr Helmut Marko, after Max Verstappen once again qualified behind the two Mercedes in Barcelona. When asked about reports that only one engine setting will be allowed from the next race at Spa onwards, the Red Bull official said: "It's good for us. "Even pole position will then be possible for us. In Barcelona we lost half a second to Mercedes because of the party mode, and at Spa it would have been eight tenths.

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"We improve every weekend in the chassis area, so Mercedes are getting closer and closer. That's why I believe we will be on par with Mercedes in qualifying as well in Belgium," Marko told Auto Bild. Earlier, it appeared unlikely that Red Bull and Verstappen would be able to challenge Mercedes for the 2020 title. But Marko said the party mode ban is "very important" to Red Bull. We still want to make Max Verstappen the youngest world champion of all time," he said.

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However, not everyone is impressed with the FIA's mid-season rule change. "The ban is not right - especially not during the season," former F1 driver Ralf Schumacher told Sky Deutschland. "Mercedes took an advantage quite legally by doing the best job. Schumacher thinks Mercedes and Daimler also have a right to be very unhappy. "Mercedes has the best package overall," he said, "but they place particular emphasis on the efficiency of the hybrid engine.

He also warns that ban is unlikely to be a silver bullet for Red Bull. "Red Bull and the others will get closer in qualifying, but Mercedes will still have the best engine," said Schumacher. Meanwhile, even with 'party mode' still in play, Toto Wolff thinks Verstappen is the favourite to win Sunday's Spanish GP. "As far as the tyres go, the situation has improved for us compared to Silverstone," he said. "I hope we can fight Max Verstappen, but judging from the long runs on Friday, he should be considered the favourite to win the race." Red Bull Racing is known for often opting for an alternative strategy for Sunday's race. At Silverstone that proved to work well again, as they managed to win the race with the alternative strategy. Christian Horner is satisfied with how the team handles the strategies. We are prepared to stick our head out of the window sometimes," Horner explains to Formula1.com. "It's not just the strategy department, it's the whole team." According to Horner it is clever that Red Bull performs so well without having the best car. Not the fastest car "The whole team is doing an amazing job, particularly trackside, because we don't have the fastest car at the moment. That's why the team has proved itself time and time again to be able to adapt, to be quick-thinking". The team has proven themselves in several areas, such as the fast times at the pit stops and the speed with which they were able to repair Max Verstappen's car. "I think strategically we've been sharp this year". That they are strategically strong has already been proven in previous races this season. "We could have won the first race in Austria with the strategy there. In Hungary we managed to split the Mercedes and at Silverstone we took the decision to qualify on the hardest tyre", Horner said. © Motor1.com UK Ferrari SF1000 engine detail Star driver Charles Leclerc comments on FIA's latest decision to clamp down on changeable power modes between qualifying and race. It emerged on Thursday ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix that the FIA is set to clamp down on changeable power modes between qualifying and the race, removing the possibility for teams to use so-called 'party mode' settings for hot laps. The move is set to be clarified in a technical directive that should be issued to teams ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix at the end of the month. The Mercedes-powered teams are widely expected to be the biggest loser as a result of the ruling, with Williams, Racing Point and the Mercedes works outfit all known to benefit from a higher-power setting in qualifying. Ferrari has struggled with the straight-line speed of its car through the 2020 season after an off-season settlement with the FIA over the performance of its power unit last year, with questions raised about its legality. Asked what the ban on qualifying engine modes would mean for Ferrari, Leclerc claimed the team had no significantly different setting available compared to the race, making it only good news for the Italian marque. "To be honest, I don't think it will affect us so much, so I think it can only be positive for us," said Leclerc. But for us, I can say that we don't have anything different from qualifying to the race. If you have something developed on your engine that you can probably run in certain amount of mileage with more power, more stress on the engine then, probably not the best news. "But from where we are right now, as Charles said, it doesn't affect us." Lewis Hamilton said the move did not come as a surprise to Mercedes as it was "obviously to slow us down", but doubted it was "going to get the result that they want". Racing Point driver Lance Stroll felt it would be a "shame" for the Mercedes-powered cars to have their peak performance reined in. "Formula 1 is all about operating at the maximum capacity of the car and the engine," said Stroll. "I think we want to see all the engine manufacturers, the teams, the car development, pushed to the limit. Williams' George Russell was also disappointed to learn of the ruling, having put the added boost to good use in his charge to Q2 at each of the last four races. "I'd be disappointed to see it lost," said Russell. "I think for every engine manufacturer, you've got a boost for qualifying. When you're within the car you've got the lowest amount of fuel you have for the whole weekend, you've got the fastest engine mode, you're the most pumped up and ready for that lap you're about to approach. You've got that one lap, give it full beans, and then just tune it down for the race.