[F1 2018 VIDEO FEATURE] MID-SEASON REVIEW: RED BULL RACING

Red Bull has a lot to be happy about with season 2018 so far, except for one key point: it is still not a genuine championship contender.

The squad has three wins to its tally at the mid-season break ... more than in any other year of the hybrid era so far.

Daniel Ricciardo showed both sides of his skillset with a swashbuckling charge to victory in China, followed by a commanding pole to flag win in Monaco as he balanced mechanical woes, while Max Verstappen gave Red Bull its first win on home soil in Austria.

Its strong start to the year came off the back of its best winter testing campaign in several seasons, Red Bull finishing the car’s build early to ensure it hit the ground running in Barcelona.

SOUNDBITE (English): DANIEL RICCIARDO
F1 DRIVER, RED BULL RACING
"I feel there's like a little bit like a good intensity. Everyone's not getting too excited it's like we know we got some work to do if we want to really achieve what we want. So yeah, we all know why we got some desires to attack this year."

But once again, those same two factors from past years – power and reliability from its Renault engines – have blunted Red Bull’s attack.

The team has had its cars fail to finish several races through mechanical faults, while it has lacked the outright power to challenge Mercedes and Ferrari at every track - prompting a switch to Honda for 2019.

2018 has been a bit stormy on the driver front too.

Verstappen was involved in an incident in every grand prix from Australia to Monaco, including Azerbaijan, where he and Ricciardo took each other out while battling for fourth place.

Unfortunately for Red Bull, it all means they will have to wait another season to challenge for the world championship.