McLaren: 2018 three-engine rule 'not Formula 1 anymore'

McLaren racing director Eric Boullier says the 2018 three-engine rule risks robbing Formula 1 of its identity, as he backed Red Bull's bid to ditch the plan

McLaren: 2018 three-engine rule 'not Formula 1 anymore'

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has campaigned several times to try to reverse the move to bring the engine usage limit down to just three for the whole season.

A recent effort to bring up the matter in F1's Strategy Group did not get far because Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne made clear he had no interest in abandoning the rule change at this stage.

But Boullier has backed Red Bull's stance.

"For me, it is going too far," said Boullier, when asked by Autosport for his views on the three-engine rule. "Too far also because it is not Formula 1 anymore.

"I am not saying we need 12 engines per race weekend, like 20 years ago. But with three engines per season, where is the technology appeal?

"The other thing is the costs - it has gone the other way.

"To go less and less and less, it costs a massive amount of money for the engine manufacturers to make it more reliable.

"So this money is going to be back in the system, and it doesn't help to make a cheaper deal."

F1 chief Ross Brawn suggested recently that the extent of grid penalties had made a "farce" of the championship.

Toro Rosso rookie Brendon Hartley has now had a grid penalty for each of his four F1 races so far due to engine component changes.

"It is a little bit frustrating," he said.

"I've been consistent in my comments that I understand why the rules are there.

"But especially in Mexico I could have qualified pretty far up the order and would have had a real chance of scoring points. That was the most frustrating one.

"But now it is announced I am here next year, these four races are preparation for next year."

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