Since Honda announced last week that it will withdraw from F1 at the end of 2021, the outside world has been paying attention to the next move of Red Bull Racing. There will be only three engine suppliers left in F1 in 2022. According to the existing structure and rules, Renault is most likely to become Red Bull's engine supplier-but the cooperation between the two parties in the hybrid era has been very unhappy. So there is another possibility: Red Bull itself will take over the development of Honda engines in 2022.
自本田上周宣布将在2021年底退出F1以来，外界一直在关注Red Bull Racing的下一步行动。 2022年F1将只剩下3个发动机供应商。根据现有的结构和规则，雷诺最有可能成为Red Bull的发动机供应商，但在混合动力时代，两方之间的合作一直很不愉快。因此还有另一种可能性：红牛本身将在2022年接管本田发动机的开发。
At the Nürburgring, Germany on Friday, Red Bull team leader Horner repeatedly emphasized that they "consider all options", but Red Bull cannot just become a "customer fleet in a pure sense".
"The team's ambition is very high, to win, to be competitive, to win the world championship," Horner said. "We need to take time to consider all the options. Of course, before the end of the season, it will definitely be before the end of this year. ."
Regarding the operability of the Honda engine development taken over by Red Bull, Horner emphasized the huge cost of engine development under the current F1 engine rules. "If you look at the cost involved in the supply of engines, it is an astronomical figure. This is why F1 cannot attract new engine suppliers and new manufacturers. We really need to pay attention to costs, those costs caused by the rules. Honda’s withdrawal is really a pity for F1, but it is also a sobering agent."
The bigger question is what shape the F1 engine will take in the future. But this is meaningless to Red Bull. According to the current rules, the engine rules will not change before 2026, and Red Bull will need to spend a transition period of four seasons. On Friday Toto Wolfe confirmed that Mercedes had no intention of supplying Red Bull with engines. Ferrari and Renault are more cautious but not proactive. Both Toto Wolfe and Renault team leader Abitobull question whether Red Bull can rely on existing engine suppliers.
更大的问题是F1引擎将来会采用什么形状。但这对红牛毫无意义。根据目前的规则，引擎规则将在2026年之前保持不变，并且红牛将需要花费四个赛季的过渡期。星期五，托托·沃尔夫（Toto Wolfe）确认梅赛德亚博官网投注安全靠谱有保障斯无意向红牛提供发动机。法拉利和雷诺更加谨慎，但并不积极。 Toto Wolfe和雷诺车队负责人Abitobull都质疑Red Bull是否可以依靠现有的发动机供应商。
"I have no doubt that Dr. Marko has a plan B," Wolff said, and he believes that it is far from the possibility of Renault providing the engine to Red Bull.
Masashi Yamamoto, head of Honda’s F1 project, said at the Nürburgring that Red Bull’s base in Milton-Kenye is a “whiteboard” in terms of power unit manufacturing. Red Bull has expressed interest in this project, but he emphasized that “there is nothing yet determine".
To take over Honda’s F1 power unit project is a arduous mission for Red Bull, especially in the era when F1 starts to cut costs. Red Bull's boss Matt Schitz has always emphasized the importance of F1 cost reduction, and his attitude is the most volatile on the issue of Red Bull's development of power unit projects.
The number of employees in the engine department of Mercedes in Brickworth has dropped to around 700, and these people will serve F1, FE and Project One at the same time. Starting in 2021, Mercedes will also provide power units for three customer teams (Aston Martin, McLaren and Williams). Diversified customers will greatly reduce the cost of developing F1 power units in the engine department.
If Honda's power unit project is taken over by Red Bull, Red Bull certainly cannot operate on the scale of Mercedes. In theory, they will only provide power units for the two Red Bull teams. Red Bull may develop together with an engine partner such as Mugen, but even so, it still requires a considerable investment. Red Bull still has 18 months to consider this issue.
如果本田的动力单元项目被红牛接管，那么红牛无疑将无法像梅赛德斯那样大规模运营。从理论上讲，它们只会为两个红牛车队提供动力装置。 Red Bull可能会与Mugen等引擎合作伙伴一起开发，但即便如此，它仍需要大量投资。红牛还有18个月的时间来考虑这个问题。
Horner believes that the key is whether the form of the power unit of F1 in the future can achieve a low enough cost to allow new manufacturers to enter. This may be regarded as another plan Red Bull is thinking about: after adjusting the rules, whether it can attract new manufacturers in advance.
"We think we really need to think about it. Is it too far to consider introducing new suppliers in 2026? Horner said, what will the technology be like then? What should the technology be?" Horner said.
Renault team leader Abi Tobull also called for a discussion on the form of the next-generation F1 power unit as soon as possible. McLaren team leader Seidel, the former Porsche team leader, also emphasized the importance of planning for the future, as well as the cost and complexity issues surrounding the power unit. These questions are the answers Red Bull hopes to get before deciding on the future power unit.
雷诺车队负责人阿比·托布尔（Abi Tobull）也呼吁尽快讨论下一代F1动力装置的形式。迈凯轮车队负责人，前保时捷车队负责人赛德尔（Seidel）也强调了对未来进行规划的重要性，以及围绕动力装置的成本和复杂性问题。这些问题是Red Bull在决定未来的动力装置之前希望获得的答案。
Horner said, "We will take time to talk with manufacturers, FIA and free media to hear their views on the future. The withdrawal of companies like Honda is bad news for F1," he emphasized.