Engine rules could force Renault out: Horner

Mon Jun 8, 2015 2:54pm EDT
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By Alan Baldwin

MONTREAL (Reuters) - Renault could quit Formula One if they are not allowed to develop their engines during the course of next season, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has warned.

The French manufacturer, partners to Red Bull and sister team Toro Rosso, has been lagging champions Mercedes and Ferrari since the complex new V6 turbo hybrid power units were introduced in 2014.

In-season development, through a complicated system of 'tokens', has been allowed this year but the 2016 regulations in their current form put an end to that unless there is unanimous agreement to relax them.

Horner told reporters at the Canadian Grand Prix that dominant champions Mercedes should think of the bigger picture before resisting change.

"The situation is we are at a precarious point in terms of Renault's commitment to the future," the Briton said.

"If you are effectively shutting that down (the engine development) in February, you are almost waving goodbye to them (Renault).

"So (Mercedes) need to have a bit of a grown-up think about it. And the FIA as well to say what is in the best interests of F1. If F1 can afford to lose an engine manufacturer, then stick to Feb. 28."

Horner said a development freeze would be the worst thing for Renault, who have said they are assessing all their options in the sport.   Continued...

Formula One - F1 - Monaco Grand Prix 2015 - Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo - 21/5/15
Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner arrives for practice
Reuters / Max Rossi