Honda 2020 gains will leave Red Bull with “no more excuses”

With the Milton Keynes-based outfit having enjoyed an encouraging first year of a new partnership with Honda in 2019, ambitions have ramped up for the campaign ahead with it targeting a fight for title glory.

Marko says that with Mercedes remaining such a strong force in F1, Red Bull cannot afford to be playing catch up in performance or points terms if it does not hit the ground running from the first race.

“We want to fight for the championship and to do so we know that we have to be competitive with the chassis right from the start – and that means the very first race,” said Marko in an exclusive interview with Motorsport.com.

Last year, Red Bull’s campaign started slowly as it took it several races to get on top of the front wing changes that came in to force for 2019.

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An update introduced at the Austrian Grand Prix unlocked the full potential of the car, however, and Max Verstappen was able to score three victories over the remainder of the campaign.

Marko famously set a target of five wins last year and for 2020 he says sights are set on doing even better than that.

“Honda has good increases for this year,” he said about the forthcoming season. “And since everything has been fulfilled so far, we assume that this will happen.

“That means we have no more excuses, in plain English.”

Asked to be specific on how many races he thinks the team can win, he said: “I think it will have to be more than five.”