Theissen hints at customer option

Formula 1's customer teams could be handed a massive boost in their hopes of getting hold of ultra-competitive customer engines, with BMW admitting that it could be ready to supply a second team by the start of 2006

Theissen hints at customer option

The German car manufacturer's power-unit has been widely regarded as the benchmark engine in F1 for several seasons, but the company has so far refused to expand beyond its supply to Williams because it does not want to overstretch its resources.

However, with Red Bull Racing understood to be the latest outfit setting its sights on a BMW customer deal in the future, the car maker's motorsport director, Mario Theissen, has not ruled out the possibility of a second supply.

"Currently we concentrate on our common goal next season with Williams," said Theissen. "From the capacity point of view it would be possible to give engines to another team beyond 2005, but there is no decision about that yet. If such a decision has been taken, we would announce it."

Theissen has refused to reveal whether its contract with Williams gives the team the option of blocking any move by BMW to supply customer engines - but he has admitted that there would be benefits from such a move, especially with long-mileage engines now required in F1.

"I cannot reveal anything about the contract with Williams," he said. "The pro would be to gain more track experience in a case of test restriction. The con is to get distracted.

"One thing is sure: you cannot earn money if you take your customer seriously and want to make sure that he gets a top rate engine."

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