Dominant end to ’13 gave us earlier start on ’14 – Horner

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Red Bull team principal Christian Horner warned his team are unlikely to have let this year’s championship detract from their efforts to prepare for next year’s new engine regulations.

With a sweeping overhaul of the rulebook to come in 2014, Horner said his team had taken advantage of the opportunity to make an early start on next year’s car.

“Thankfully we managed to secure this championship reasonably early which has enabled all the focus to go onto the RB10, whilst obviously Ferrari and Mercedes have been battling each other for the runners-up position,” he told Sky.

“I think that of course we have been pushing the boundaries and [chief technical officer] Adrian [Newey] is never famous for starting next year’s car early and you know that is exactly the same case for the RB10,” Horner added.

Red Bull ended the season with nine consecutive victories – all scored by Sebastian Vettel – and Horner said the team have raised their game this year.

“We have some very good opponents, there are some very clever people in the other teams, but I think what we have achieved this year as a team – you know we have worked closer, harder, more effectively than any year – and we are always looking inwardly,” he said.

“Adrian and the technical team have done a brilliant job, all the departments, all the support, all the unsung heroes that you don’t get to see or hear about have all gone that extra yard and that is what has enabled us to achieve this kind of result.”

FIA returns Manor’s F1 entry fee for 2017

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Good news: Manor Grand Prix Racing Limited got a refund of an entry fee it paid to the FIA to run in this year’s F1 season.

Bad news: Manor still hasn’t run this year, and won’t be for the foreseeable future (especially as Manor’s former leadership staff is moving that team into FIA WEC’s new-look LMP1 class in addition to its LMP2 program).

Manor Group’s receivership outfit, Just Racing Services Limited, went into administration earlier this year. As there was no new buyer for the F1 team, Manor dropped from the 2017 grid before the season.

The FIA said it would return its entry fee to help Manor Group pay off outstanding debts.

It basically means nothing in the grand scheme of things since Manor missed out on 10th place in the constructor’s standings in 2016 and fell from the F1 grid as a result, but hey, it’s a goodwill gesture going into Thanksgiving this week.