Red Bull owner slams current state of F1
Dietrich Mateschitz hints at team’s departure from F1 due to restricive regulations and disappointment with Renault engine
Red Bull’s future in Formula 1 has again been brought into doubt after owner Dietrich Mateschitz launched another swingeing attack on the current state of the sport.
His complaints, made during the Austrian GP weekend at the Red Bull Ring circuit he owns, focused on engine partner Renault.“They take from us not only time and money, but also the will and motivation,” said Mateschitz. “There is no driver and no chassis that is able to compensate for this lack of horsepower.” While Red Bull are contracted to compete in F1 until 2020, Mateschitz said: “You cannot force someone to stay when he wants to leave.”
He also criticised F1’s restrictive aerodynamic regulations for preventing “Adrian Newey from weaving his magic on front wings”. And he added: “What else has to happen that we will lose our motivation completely?”
Team boss Christian Horner was left to interpret Mateschitz’s words, saying: “The intention is to be here and to sort out the issues in the sport and our own competitiveness.” He added that Mateschitz’s concerns were rooted both in the general state of Formula 1, and in Red Bull’s lack of competitiveness. “He wants to see the sport go back to its glory days and see it have the same appeal and attraction that Formula 1 has previously enjoyed.
“We’re working hard to try to help change things and, from a team point of view, we want to be in a position where we can be competitive. At the moment we’re in a difcult position, but hopefully we can turn that around.”
Bernie Ecclestone played down the threat of Red Bull leaving. “I know Mr Mateschitz very well,” said Ecclestone. “There’d be more chance of him pulling out if he was winning than when he was losing. They’re disappointed, aren’t they? What they are saying is ‘It’s not our fault that our performance is what it is.’
“He [Mateschitz] is a bit frustrated. He’s spent a lot of money, does a good job and has been fantastic for F1. It doesn’t mean that because he’s falling out of love he wants a divorce. He just needs a new girlfriend.”
Concerned about Renault being unable to make their engine competitive or pulling out altogether, Red Bull have opened talks with Ferrari about the possibility of using their engines from 2017.
Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne is open to this. “They will nd their way again and if we can help them, we’d be more than glad,” Marchionne said. “It’s in our DNA; we’ve done it before. We can provide engines to any of the teams.”
Held back by their underperforming Renault power unit, Red Bull are struggling in 2015
Dietrich Mateschitz: “You cannot force someone to stay when he wants to go”