Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

Red Bull: Top 5 Seasons in Formula 1

AUSTIN, TEXAS - OCTOBER 23: Race winner Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing celebrates winning the F1 World Constructors Championship with his team after the F1 Grand Prix of USA at Circuit of The Americas on October 23, 2022 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Alex Bierens de Haan/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202210240171 // Usage for editorial use only //

Red Bull has become one of Formula One’s most successful teams in recent history. What have been their best seasons ever? Let’s find out.

Despite coming into existence late in 2004, Red Bull went on to become one of Formula One’s most successful teams, winning four consecutive Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championships from 2010-2013 with the phenomenal Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber behind the wheel. Although Mercedes ended their winning streak after the Silver Arrows outclassed the competition for eight years in a row, Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez were able to bring Red Bull back to glory in 2022 by winning the first Constructors’ title since 2013. With a total of five titles, Red Bull engraved its name among the best, ranking sixth in the list of most championships, only two titles behind Lotus, and three behind McLaren and Mercedes.

5. The 2012 Season

Embed from Getty Images

Many people, including myself, consider the 2012 season to be one of the best ever for one simple reason: it had it all. Five World Champions were competing for the title, action-packed races, unexpected victories, and a season-long emotional roller coaster.

Everyone expected Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel to dominate the field as they did the year before, but they were wrong. Seven different drivers won the first seven races of the season, including Pastor Maldonado of Williams and Nico Rosberg of Mercedes, both of whom it was their first-ever victories.

The defending champion Sebastian Vettel had gone 13 rounds with just one victory in Bahrain and several podiums and top-ten finishes. While title rival Fernando Alonso has stretched his lead to 40 points in an effort to finally win the title he was denied in 2010 by the German. However, what happened next was unbelievable as Vettel put on an incredible performance winning four races in a row to snatch the championship lead.

Vettel went into the season finale in Brazil with a 13-point lead over Alonso. Despite dropping to last and having his left sidepod damaged at the end of lap one due to a collision, Vettel refused to give up on the title. He rejoined the race in 22nd and climbed the grid until he reached sixth, enough for him to seal the championship. Despite only winning five races, Vettel won his third successive Driver’s Championship. He was just three points ahead of Alonso, denying the Spaniard and Ferrari, once again.

Red Bull snatched their third Constructors’ Championship with a winning percentage of only 35%7 race victories, 8 pole positions, 14 podium finishes, 7 fastest laps, and 460 points.

Red Bull in 2012: Driver vs. Driver

  • Championship points: 460 — Vettel (281), Webber (179)
  • Race wins: 7 — Vettel (5), Webber (2)
  • Podium finishes: 14 — Vettel (10), Webber (4)
  • Pole positions: 8 — Vettel (6), Webber (2)
  • Fastest laps: 7 — Vettel (6), Webber (1)
  • Laps led: 434 — Vettel (368), Webber (66)

4. The 2010 Season

Embed from Getty Images

The start of Red Bull’s dominant era. Although the 2010 season was wide-open, with a four-way battle for the championship until the bitter end, it was clear that Red Bull was the team to beat. They had the fastest car on the grid and two ambitious drivers eyeing their first world title.

In the 18th round of the season, Red Bull clinched their first constructors’ championship with their Renault-powered RB6, scoring 469 points, 48 points ahead of McLaren, and 80 points ahead of Ferrari. One down, one to go.

History made in the final round

In the season finale in Abu Dhabi, all expectations were in Fernando Alonso’s favor as he entered the race leading the championship by eight points over Mark Webber and 15 over Sebastian Vettel. Despite starting on pole, everyone thought it would only be a matter of time before Vettel would lose his position to Alonso as no one expected the Spaniard and Ferrari to let this championship slip through their fingers, but they did.

In one of the craziest title deciders ever, Vettel went on to win the 55-lap race fairly unchallenged after both Ferrari and Red Bull made errors in their pit strategies, causing both Alonso and Webber to struggle in the middle of the field. The German finished the race 10 seconds ahead of McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton, winning the title by eight points over Alonso. As a result, Vettel became Formula One’s youngest champion at the age of 23. A record that still stands.

After finishing third in the championship with only 16 points behind his teammate, Mark Webber admitted that this was his last chance to be a World Champion. It was a frustrating moment for the Australian, who had clearly given his all in this title battle, winning four races, finishing on the podium 10 times, and even leading the championship with three rounds remaining.

Red Bull sealed their first constructors’ championship with a winning percentage of 47.4%Nine race wins, 20 podium finishes, 15 pole positions, six fastest laps, and a total of 498 points.

Red Bull in 2010: Driver vs. Driver

  • Championship points: 498 — Vettel (256), Webber (242)
  • Race wins: 9 — Vettel (5), Webber (4)
  • Podium finishes: 20 — Vettel (10), Webber (10)
  • Pole positions: 15 — Vettel (10), Webber (5)
  • Fastest laps: 6 — Vettel (3), Webber (3)
  • Laps led: 699 — Vettel (382), Webber (317)

3. The 2013 Season

Embed from Getty Images

Another year and Red Bull once again proved its unrelenting superiority in the sport. In the season that marked the end of the V8 engines, Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel won their fourth consecutive Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championships, capturing 50% of the titles during the eight-season V8 era. The Austrian team finished the remarkable season with 596 points – 236 points over Mercedes, and a winning percentage of 68.4%13 out of 19 races all won by formidable Vettel.

Aged just 26, the German driver added his fourth and last title to the cabinet, becoming the youngest driver in history to win four championships in a row. Vettel wrapped up his final title with 397 points, 16 podium finishes, nine pole positions, seven fastest laps, and 13 race victories – the second-most victories in a year, tied with F1 legend Michael Schumacher. To date, Vettel holds the record for most consecutive Grand Prix victories in a single season with nine (Belgium 2013 – Brazil 2013).

Mark Webber finished the championship in third place with 199 points, two pole positions, and eight podium finishes. The Australian driver was denied a win in the second round of the season in Malaysia when Vettel ignored team orders and passed him during the final laps of the race. At the end of the season, Webber announced that he would leave Formula One to join Porsche’s endurance racing program, but said his relationship with his teammate had no bearing on his decision.

Vettel and Webber’s partnership came to an end, and the curtain has fallen on Red Bull’s dominant era, with Mercedes outstripping the field for eight years in a row.

Red Bull in 2013: Driver vs. Driver

  • Championship points: 596 — Vettel (397), Webber (199)
  • Race wins: 13 — Vettel (13), Webber (0)
  • Podium finishes: 24 — Vettel (16), Webber (8)
  • Pole positions: 11 — Vettel (9), Webber (2)
  • Fastest laps: 12 — Vettel (7), Webber (5)
  • Laps led: 753 — Vettel (684), Webber (69)

2. The 2011 Season

Embed from Getty Images

2011 was one of Red Bull’s most dominant seasons, with the Austrian team battering rivals en route to their second consecutive constructors’ and drivers’ championships. The team finished the season with the second-most points scored in their history (650), with a 153-point lead over their closest rival McLaren.

On his way to becoming the youngest-ever double champion, Sebastian Vettel dominated the field in the RB7 rocket-ship of a car, winning 11 of the 19 action-packed races, taking a record 15 pole positions, finishing on the podium 17 times, and leading a record 739 laps. The 24-year-old German won his second title with ease, beating McLaren’s Jenson Button by a then-record gap of 122 points.

Mark Webber contributed to Red Bull’s success that year with three pole positions, 10 podium finishes, seven fastest laps, and one victory in the season finale in Brazil. The Australian finished third in the world championship with 258 points, 12 points behind Button.

Red Bull successfully defended their title with a winning percentage of 63.2%12 race wins, 27 podium finishes, 10 fastest laps, and an incredible 18 pole positions in a season of 19 rounds – the second-most pole positions by a constructor in a single year.

Red Bull in 2011: Driver vs. Driver

  • Championship points: 650 — Vettel (392), Webber (258)
  • Race wins: 12 — Vettel (11), Webber (1)
  • Podium finishes: 27 — Vettel (17), Webber (10)
  • Pole positions: 18 — Vettel (15), Webber (3)
  • Fastest laps: 10 — Vettel (3), Webber (7)
  • Laps led: 798 — Vettel (739), Webber (59)

1. The 2022 Season

Embed from Getty Images

The 2022 season is undoubtedly Red Bull’s best yet, with the team outclassing the competition to finally clinch their first Constructors’ Championship since 2013, ending Mercedes’ eight-year of dominance. The team scored a total of 759 championship points, placing them second on the list of most points scored by a constructor in a single year, trailing Mercedes’ 2016 season by only six points. 

In the first three rounds of the season, Ferrari posed a threat to Red Bull, with Charles Leclerc leading the championship by 46 points over Max Verstappen. However, the World Champion soon unleashed the wings and flew away from the grid, with rivals trying but failing to catch up. The Dutch driver went on to retain his crown in dominant fashion, scoring a record 454 points and winning a record 15 races in a season of 22 rounds.

Sergio Perez also had his most successful season to date, finishing third in the World Championship with 305 points, just three points behind Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc. The Mexican driver won in Monaco and Singapore, took his first-ever pole position in Saudi Arabia, and finished on the podium 11 times. With a total of three victories added to his name, Perez surpasses the late Pedro Rodríguez as the most successful Mexican driver in history.

Red Bull wrapped up their fifth constructors’ title with the highest winning percentage in their history (77.3%). The Austrian team had 17 race victories (the second-most victories in a season), eight pole positions, 28 podium finishes, and eight fastest laps.

Red Bull in 2022: Driver vs. Driver

  • Championship points: 759 — Verstappen (454), Perez (305)
  • Race wins: 17 — Verstappen (15), Perez (2)
  • Podium finishes: 28 — Verstappen (17), Perez (11)
  • Pole positions: 8 — Verstappen (7), Perez (1)
  • Fastest laps: 8 — Verstappen (5), Perez (3)
  • Laps led: 763 — Verstappen (616), Perez (147)

Which of Red Bull’s top five seasons did you enjoy the most? Join the LWOS community and share your opinion in the comments section.


More Posts

Send Us A Message