Red Bull team principal Christian Horner: Mercedes have ‘particularly aggressive’ porpoising problem

Christian Horner said he thinks that Mercedes are struggling with a ‘particularly aggressive’ porpoising problem.

The Red Bull team principal was speaking to Sky Sports after Friday’s free practice sessions at the Bahrain Grand Prix, ahead of Sunday’s race.

He explained how the day had been for the Austrian team.

“It’s freezing out there,” he began. “It’s been a positive day for us both in the warmer conditions, early, and the short run, the long run, looked pretty decent.

“Both the fuel modes, the engine modes, there’s so many caveats but we’re pretty satisfied.”

Sergio Perez was less impressive than current champion Max Verstappen, but Horner offered mitigation.

“He was trying a couple of different things on his car,” he said. “When you’re limited on time, you diverge on setups to get as much data as you can so both aerodynamically and mechanically.”

When asked about Mercedes’ struggles with porpoising, he said his team had suffered, “to a lesser degree – theirs looks particularly aggressive. We had a fair amount of it in Barcelona but we’ve started to understand it and get on top of it;

“It’s an inherent thing with these regulations, so it’s just trying to understand what triggers it and calm that down. They’re so sensitive to ride height, the lower you go.

“I think that we’re focused on how we can improve our car, it’s such a new set of regs, the running order will vary.”

Horner also pointed out that Ferrari have had a strong showing so far.

“I think Ferrari are very quick, [Charles] Leclerc was quick, [Carlos] Sainz was quick. Whenever they’ve been on track they’ve been very impressive . They could well be the car to beat tomorrow.”