|Photo: Octane Photography|
Major sets of rule changes - and we have just had about the most major of the sport's modern times - always carry more risk for whoever's on top by definition, given their tendency to repatriate everyone to base camp; to render irrelevant previous advantages. History is littered with examples of such occurrences turning cheetahs into slugs at a stroke, sometimes irrecoverably.
So the risks were there. But even with these there were specifics that set perilous traps before the Bulls. The tilting of the formula more towards engines and away relatively from aerodynamics, for a team for which aero usually was the trump card, was one. That Red Bull, unlike its two closest rivals in the 2013 championship table, does not manufacturer its units under the same umbrella - and either down the corridor or down the road - was another; instead they're made several hundred miles away and over the English Channel in Viry-Chatillon. Add to this that even during the team's dominance it never appeared entirely at one with energy recovery systems either, which now are a bigger factor.