Red Bull F1 boss fears 'ridiculous' engine spending war

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner fears that Formula 1 could face a 'ridiculous' spending war from 2016 if no deal is reached on relaxing engine freeze rules

After talks to discuss a rule change to allow some in-season engine development collapsed over the Brazilian Grand Prix weekend, frustrations have mounted at the way Mercedes is not eager to accept change.

If no compromise deal can be reached in the next few weeks, then one option being looked is for the Ferrari, Renault and Honda teams to push through rule changes for 2016 that would blow open restrictions on development work.

Under F1's governance system, unanimous support is needed to change rules for next year, whereas only a majority of teams need to approve changes for 2016.

Horner, who was actively involved in talks with Mercedes over the Brazilian GP weekend, says forcing open the freeze in 2016 would be a disaster for teams' budgets.

"I think that is the only option because, with a majority vote, the 2016/17/18 rules can be opened up," he said.

"So we will have to face the pain in 2015 to open it up in 2016/17/18, which is ridiculous.

"We will all end up spending a lot more money over a longer period of time.

"What should happen is that a window should be opened to allow Renault, Ferrari and Honda to try to close that gap."

Mercedes' rivals had been willing to accept a plan to allow 13 development tokens in July, but Mercedes was only willing to accept the use of five tokens.

A fresh compromise deal - whereby homologation of the engine would be put back to March instead of February - was also rejected by Mercedes.

Talks are expected to continue over the next few weeks to try to get agreement before crunch F1 Strategy Group and F1 Commission meetings on November 25.


Horner also said that he was not happy with the way Mercedes had behaved in the engine freeze talks, having changed its position several times.

"It is all rather frustrating because we sit down and talk about things," he said.

"You leave the room and think you have agreed something and then it changes.

"It is a ridiculous situation that we cannot find a solution to, and I have no idea what the outcome will be."

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