Red Bull Racing has so far only just offered a "glimpse" of its full potential this year despite capturing both World Championship titles. So says team principal Christian Horner, who reckons that the valuable lessons the team took on board during a sometimes difficult 2010 campaign will help make the outfit so much stronger next year.
"There have been some challenges this season, but it is a tough sport and as a team we have gotten stronger and stronger," Horner told AUTOSPORT. "We have developed a lot in the last two seasons. We came close to winning last year and, arguably, had it not been for the double diffuser, we would have done it. But we turned that to our advantage this year. We managed to develop a car for this season while challenging for a championship last year, which is obviously the target going into 2011.
"There are a huge amount of positives, and a huge amount of lessons that have been learned. We have only just seen a glimpse of the potential that this group is capable of."
Horner, who flew with his team to Red Bull's headquarters in Austria immediately after seeing Sebastian Vettel win the drivers' crown in Abu Dhabi on Sunday, believes that Red Bull Racing has the strength in depth now to ensure that its push to the final round this year has not compromised its car development for 2011. He also thinks that the race-winning form the team has shown over the past two seasons can now be consistently reached.
"It is not like it is a flash in the pan," he said. "Everybody said last year that McLaren and Ferrari were so focused on 2008 that they missed out on the rule changes in 2009. Well, we didn't start 2009 particularly early. We turned out with a good car; we fought the championship all the way through and managed to also develop a good car coming into this year. And that remains the challenge for next year.
"It has been a culmination of many things, but the commitment, the dedication, and the sacrifices that have been made with family time to achieve the results we have had is all testimony to the group of people we have and the tremendous backing we have had from Red Bull and Dietrich Mateschitz."