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Red Bull Racing

 Red Bull Racing

For a team that has existed for less than two decades the success achieved by Red Bull Racing is stunning.

The energy drinks giant took over the Jaguar operation at the end of 2004 and has since forged the careers of multiple top-class drivers.

Sebastian Vettel, Daniel Ricciardo, Max Verstappen are just the tip of the iceberg for drivers making the most of the junior programme on offer.

Four drivers' titles and four constructors' crowns, multiple race winners sharing the 65 victories scored by the team in just 305 starts shows the rapid rise of the Austrian team based in Milton Keynes.

Red Bull's early years - 2005-2008

Red Bull's first season was a promising step forward from the Jaguar days. 34 points shared between drivers David Coulthard, Christian Klien and Vitantonio Liuzzi - who drove just four races - ensured more points were scored than the preceding outfit had managed in either of the previous two seasons.

Podiums were in reach on occasion as the team was pipped to sixth by BAR at the conclusion of the campaign. At the end of the season, Red Bull signed highly-regarded technical guru Adrian Newey from McLaren.

For 2006 Coulthard and Klien stayed on board but fortunes began to fade. Retirements were commonplace, although the Scottish driver was able to clinch the team's first podium at the Monaco Grand Prix by finishing third.

At the end of the season, 18 fewer points were scored but the championship position remained. Mark Webber - who drove for Jaguar ahead of Red Bull's acquisition, returned to the team for 2007.

In an improved season, Webber picked up a podium at the European Grand Prix as Red Bull finished fifth in the championship courtesy of consistent point-scoring. The Australian was challenging for victory in the rain-soaked Japanese Grand Prix at Fuji before Vettel, then at junior team Toro Rosso, speared into the back of him under safety car conditions.

2008 would be Coulthard's final season before retiring. He picked up the team's only podium of the year at the Canadian Grand Prix but the car struggled towards the end of the year as Webber and Coulthard scored just five points combined across the final 10 races to finish seventh in the constructors' standings once more.

Vettel vs Webber - 2009-2014

Vettel's win for Toro Rosso at Monza in 2008 earned him the right to replace Coulthard alongside Webber for 2009 and with major regulation changes enforced, the German was involved in a title fight with Brawn GP's Jenson Button.

The British driver had such a strong start to the season that even with Vettel securing four victories - including the team's first at the Chinese Grand Prix - and four further podiums, the lead was still unassailable.

Webber earned his first career victory at the Nurburgring despite serving a drive-through penalty but the combined effort was not enough to earn the team a first title.

Tempers would begin to flare between the team-mates in 2010 as both would have a chance at becoming world champion. A collision between the two at the Turkish Grand Prix began to sour relationships, whilst at the British Grand Prix, a new front wing failed on Vettel's car, with Webber's part switched to the German's car to compensate. After taking victory, Webber uttered "not bad for a number two driver" over team radio.

Heading to Abu Dhabi for the final race with four wins each, Webber and Vettel were aiming to demote Fernando Alonso and take championship glory. The Australian was closest to the Ferrari but by following Alonso's strategy into traffic during the race, the door was opened for Vettel to win the race and the title.

One championship double wouldn't cut it for team principal Christian Horner and Newey. Vettel dominated in 2011, taking 11 victories on his way to title number two for team and driver. In fact, only twice did the German fail to finish on the podium - his home grand prix and at Abu Dhabi. Webber scored his only victory of the season at the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix.

Webber couldn't carry the momentum into a frenetic start to 2012. Seven different winners from seven races to kick-off the season ensured neither Vettel nor Red Bull could scamper into the distance early on.

Alonso looked like the man to beat until Vettel notched four consecutive wins to take the advantage into the final race of the year. After contact with Bruno Senna on lap one at a treacherously damp Interlagos, Vettel's hopes of a third title seemed to have evaporated, only for an exhilarating drive with heavy damage back to sixth stealing the title from Alonso once again.

2013 would be a record-equalling season for Vettel. A falling-out between himself and Webber in Malaysia over 'Multi 21', a code for remaining in position after the final stop, was disobeyed by Vettel as he overtook his team-mate for victory, sparking furore within the team.

Webber would fail to win a race in his final season in the sport as Vettel took 13 victories, nine of which came consecutively to round out the campaign. This streak is still equal with Alberto Ascari for the longest consecutive winning streak in F1.

Ricciardo and Verstappen - 2014-Present

Out went one Australian and in came another. Ricciardo, who had impressed with Toro Rosso just as Vettel had, made an instant impact in a year where the team struggled with the lack of power provided by Renault at the dawn of the V6 turbo-hybrid.

The newcomer would take three victories to become the only to thwart Mercedes during the campaign, his first coming in Canada. Vettel struggled throughout, earning just four podiums ahead of a surprise announcement ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix. The four-time world champion would move to Ferrari for 2015.

Up steps Russian Daniil Kvyat to fill the void but a difficult season for both drivers resulted in Red Bull finishing fourth in the constructors' with just three podiums - two of which coming with a two-three in Hungary.

Despite taking a podium in the Chinese Grand Prix in 2016, Kvyat lasted just four races before he was ousted in favour of teenager Verstappen. The Dutchman made the perfect start to life at the team by taking victory on his Red Bull debut in Spain, becoming the youngest winner in F1 history.

Ricciardo would return to the top step of the podium in Malaysia as the team made its way back to runner-up in the constructors' standings.

13 retirements in 2017 did nothing to help Red Bull's relationship with Renault, with the team having already rebadged its engines as TAG Heuer a year previous. Ricciardo did take a win with Verstappen adding a further two, but Ferrari's improvements meant the Scuderia leapfrogged the team into second by season's end.

Four victories and consistent podium finishes for Verstappen and Ricciardo alike were still not good enough to retake the runner-up mantle from Ferrari but bigger issues were arising. The team's handling of the collision between the pair at Baku was the straw that broke the camel's back for Ricciardo, who announced he would join Renault at the end of the year.

The team has failed to make up for his departure as of yet. Pierre Gasly lasted only half a season before Alex Albon was called up in place of the Frenchman in 2019, whilst Albon himself was shuffled down the pecking order at the team in favour of Sergio Perez for 2021.

Verstappen's superstardom is difficult to run against but it is clear he is the closest driver to Lewis Hamilton in terms of talent on track at the moment. Can he and Red Bull end Mercedes' dominance?