Ferrari was "most willing" to discuss Red Bull F1 engine deal from 2022

Christian Horner has revealed that Red Bull held "exploratory discussions" with Ferrari over a Formula 1 engine deal from 2022 before deciding to form its own powertrain division.

Ferrari was "most willing" to discuss Red Bull F1 engine deal from 2022

Red Bull's existing power unit partner, Honda, announced last October it would be quitting F1 at the end of the 2021 season, leaving the four-time champion team in need of a new supplier.

After securing a freeze on power unit development under the regulations from 2022, Red Bull opted to purchase the IP for Honda's engines and create a new arm called Red Bull Powertrains.

The move from Red Bull came amid limited options for alternative suppliers, with only Mercedes, Renault and Ferrari being alternatives.

Speaking on F1's Beyond the Grid podcast, Red Bull team principal Horner revealed that Ferrari was the only one to really show any willingness for talks, but the reluctance to be a customer team proved to be a deal-breaker.

"The most natural thing was to have a discussion with the existing suppliers," Horner said.

"Mercedes was a very short conversation, Toto [Wolff] obviously wasn't particularly keen on that one. In fact Renault, their aspirations of a team didn't include supplying a team like Red Bull.

"The most willing was Ferrari. We had some exploratory discussions. But to be a customer, so to have to accept all of the integration, particularly with the new regulations that are coming, would be a massively hard pill to swallow.

"That's when we started to explore the possibility, 'OK, how do we take on this challenge in a Red Bull manner?' and see if we can put a deal together with Honda for the foreseeable future.

"The freeze was fundamental to that, otherwise we wouldn't have had the capacity to develop an engine.

"To take that step, and it's a big step and a bold step, to take control of our own destiny as an engine supplier and bring the whole lot under one roof in Milton Keynes, it would make us the only team other than Ferrari to have the whole lot within one facility."

Christian Horner, Team Principal, Red Bull Racing

Christian Horner, Team Principal, Red Bull Racing

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Honda's final season in F1 is proving to be a successful one. Red Bull has scored five wins already this year and leads the constructors' championship, while Max Verstappen sits 18 points clear at the top of the drivers' standings.

Read Also:

Horner said that Honda was "loving" the current success, but acknowledged it was a "great, great shame" to see the Japanese manufacturer leave at the end of the year.

"We'd have loved them to stay longer," Horner said.

"We're just about to go under a freeze for the next three years, so costs are more controlled. They've worked very hard to get themselves into a competitive position.

"But certainly next year, we're looking to maintain some form of relationship. Obviously I'm not going to go into the details of the discussions, but we're hoping to have as soft of a landing as we can.

"It's an enormous challenge to start form scratch as an engine builder."

shares
comments

Related video

Aston Martin secures another senior Red Bull F1 technical signing
Previous article

Aston Martin secures another senior Red Bull F1 technical signing

Next article

Will softer tyres shake up the F1 order in Austria this weekend?

Will softer tyres shake up the F1 order in Austria this weekend?
The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver Plus

The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver

Formula 1's incoming engine rules shake-up has multiple targets. But it may also solve what has been a bone of contention since the hybrids arrived in 2014. The new plan will allow the series to pump up the volume

How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance Plus

How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance

Nyck de Vries appeared to have missed his opportunity to break into Formula 1 as he was passed over for more exciting talents who have now become frontrunners and title fighters. But after catching the eye outside of the F1 sphere, before his stunning impromptu grand prix debut in Italy, will it lead to a delayed full-time race seat?

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment? Plus

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment?

The Singapore Grand Prix has, explains BEN EDWARDS, played an important role in Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career. As the series returns to the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in three years, he faces the latest challenge with an underperforming Mercedes car

Formula 1
Sep 28, 2022
Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals Plus

Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals

Although Ferrari's chances of title glory in 2022 have evaporated, chairman John Elkann expects the team to have chalked up both championships by 2026. Both require drivers to play the team game and, having now become more comfortable with the F1-75, Carlos Sainz may be Ferrari's key to title glory

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2022
How F1 has tried to avoid repeating its 2014 engine rules mistakes Plus

How F1 has tried to avoid repeating its 2014 engine rules mistakes

With Formula 1’s future engine regulations now agreed, MARK GALLAGHER wonders if they will provide a more competitive field than past attempts actually managed

Formula 1
Sep 26, 2022
How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era Plus

How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era

STUART CODLING charts the development of the Williams FW09, the ugly duckling that heralded the start of the title-winning Williams-Honda partnership

Formula 1
Sep 25, 2022
The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared Plus

The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared

Recent moves within the driver market have reminded MAURICE HAMILTON of a time when contracts weren’t worth the paper they weren’t written on…

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2022
Audi’s innovative first assault on grand prix racing Plus

Audi’s innovative first assault on grand prix racing

It has been a long time coming but Audi’s arrival in Formula 1 is finally on the horizon for 2026. But it won’t be its first foray into grand prix racing, as the German manufacturer giant has a history both long and enthralling

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2022