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Coulthard cautious on 2007 hopes 24 Feb 2007

David Coulthard (GBR) Red Bull Racing Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain. 26 January 2007. World © Moy/Sutton

Scot reserving judgement on Red Bull's prospects

The long-awaited Red Bull RB3 has so far brought mixed results during pre-season testing. While its first run prompted concerns it might not live up to expectations, David Coulthard’s impressive times in Barcelona recently appeared to hammer home just what the Newey-designed car might be capable of. So what are we to believe? Ahead of this week's Bahrain test we spoke exclusively to Coulthard to find out…

Q: How is the car? Thumbs-up or thumbs-down?
David Coulthard:
My thumb doesn’t know at the moment…

Q: You expressed your disappointment that the modifications after the first Valencia test did not bring the anticipated results in Jerez. But then the team found answers to many problems in Barcelona. How come?
Work! The same as the other teams - work, work and more work!

Q: New cars tend to have teething problems. What crucial points are you currently concentrating on?
The current things we’re working on are the gearbox, overall reliability and basically building our relationship with Renault and learning about its electronic systems.

Q: How has the RB3-Renault-Bridgestone package worked so far?
The package is not yet optimized so we’ve got a lot of work to do to get the performance we want. There are some upgrades for the Bahrain test and some things we should have prior to Australia, which should help.

Q: You have done the most mileage of all the drivers on the 2007 grid. Do you have an idea from the latest tests how this season will develop…
It’s actually a misconception that because I’m the oldest I’m the most experienced. Rubens (Barrichello) has done more Grands Prix than me. Everyone still has more time to develop ahead of the start of the season, so it’s hard to know how it will unfold until we start racing in Australia in a few weeks’ time.

Q: You were looking forward to this season with high hopes. How hard do you think it will be to reach your personal goals?
At the moment we’re not going to achieve the goals I had for the year, but we’ve got some more time to develop and hopefully, once we’ve done that, we can try and achieve them.

Q: Red Bull chief Dietrich Mateschitz very recently explained the two rules for his Formula One activities: rule one is to go fast, rule two is to go faster. Do you think finishing fifth in the 2007 constructors’ championship is realistic?
Of course it’s realistic. Other teams are not doing anything that’s not humanly possible, it’s just that they’ve got the right mix of technical investment and facilities. That’s what we need to continue to develop at Red Bull and then the results will come.