Verstappen “pleased” with “smooth” first run in RB16

Like Mercedes, Red Bull has eschewed a proper launch, instead opting to head straight to the track… for a filming day.

A crisp but cold Silverstone provided the venue for the RB16’s first appearance, the car, running in full 2020 race livery, as Max Verstappen completed a series of planned runs on the 1.639 mile (2.638 km) National Circuit.

“The important thing today is getting the car running so that everything is up to speed before we get to Barcelona,” said the Dutchman. “It’s been a while since I was in a Formula One car and I was really looking forward to this morning. Once you fire up, you’re straight back into it, but before then, there’s always a sense of anticipation about what the new car and engine will feel like.

“Today everything went smoothly and I’m looking forward to testing next week. The target for the whole team is of course to be in a position to fight for the championship and improve on last year.

“The team is very motivated and everyone worked very hard over the winter and I think we are in a good way. I can’t wait to get started and hopefully we can be competitive from the start and then I think it can be a really interesting and fun year.”

“We’ve had a good winter,” added teammate Alex Albon, “lots of chilling out but also a lot of training and time in the simulator, so it’s good to finally see the end result here on track.

“It’s important to be here and get the initial feedback first-hand from Max and the rest of the Team. Everything seems to be looking good for Barcelona. Obviously, it’s a filming day but it’s still exciting – and I’m really looking forward to driving the car once winter testing begins.”

“We had a great debut season with Honda,” said Christian Horner, “and the partnership has gone from strength to strength.

“It’s been a really positive winter, and the effort that’s gone in behind the scenes has been truly impressive. Further steps have been made on both the power unit and the chassis side, and the integration of the power unit fully into the car is a work of art. It’s nice to see the RB16 out on track for the first time today in what is now an iconic livery.”