Renault say Red Bull not playing the game


After enduring a rather tumultuous start to the new V6 turbo era of Formula one in 2014, both Red Bull Racing and its engine partner Renault Sport where able to recover some respectability to their campaign in 2014. The pair finished second in the constructors championship winning 3 races along the way.

The expectations in Milton Keynes over the winter was that the 2015 campaign would see the Anglo-French partnership move closer to Mercedes, but that hope has yet to materialise and they have been overtaken by both Williams and Ferrari. This has led to a spectacular public war of words between Milton Keynes and Viry Chatilllon which culminated in the mild mannered Adrian Newey being called a liar by the head of Renault Sport F1.

The cracks in the relationship began to appear during the first winter test in 2014, when Sebastian Vettel allegedly climbed out of the car on the fourth morning in Jerez and refused to drive ‘that crap’ any more.

Over time, Renault had been growing increasingly frustrated with the constant rollicking they’ve been subjected to from the likes of Horner, Mateschitz and Marko and now Cyril Abiteboul reveals how Red Bull have failed in their promise to operate with Renault as a single works team.

“They expressed a desire, but for some reason – and maybe the reasons are not completely on their side – we have not managed to move from the uniform statements to acts.”

“It’s one thing to state that Red Bull is our team and a works team of Renault, but it’s another to make it happen.

“When you are a works team, for example Mercedes, it has one budget. At the start of the year the first decision that they have to make is how much is going into the engine side and how much into the team side and in order to do that you look at the regulations, you look at your overall performance and you look in particular at the break down in performance between chassis, engine and driver. You make your plans and distribute the money and budget that you have available between those three elements. For me it’s a no brainer and that should be the way forward.”

The implication behind this statement is surprising. Abiteboul is clearly making the point Red Bull have not funded the Renault engine development properly – as a works team partnership.

With Red Bull rumoured to be looking for a new engine partner for 2016, all this of course could be legal posturing, to hedge against any breach of contract claims by one or other of the parties.


13 responses to “Renault say Red Bull not playing the game

  1. From GetHampshire 27th May…
    Four men have been arrested after stolen Red Bull trophies were discovered in a lake near Yateley.

    The trophies were among 60 stolen when ram-raiders in a 4×4 smashed into the Infiniti Red Bull Racing Formula One team’s headquarters in Milton Keynes on December 6.

    Twenty of the stolen trophies were then recovered nine days later from Horseshoe Lake.

    On Tuesday (May 26) during an episode of BBC Crimewatch the arrests were announced.

  2. So Renault expect Red Bull to fund their engine program?

    McLaren seem to have a similar deal with Honda, and I can’t see McLaren funding the engine program at all, if anything I’d imagine Honda are helping McLaren with the bills + free engines….

    • “So Renault expect Red Bull to fund their engine program?”
      That was my take, and at first I was surprised, but after thinking about it why not?
      It Could all depend on the profit sharing of customer engines, and Rb having a say as to who those customers are.
      I just can’t see RB pouring money into Renault with both of them talking about quitting, Renault buying their own team, RB funding their own engine.

      • Renault did not share in the huge profits Red Bull made during their 4 in a row run. INFINITY Red Bull racing got hundreds of millions in prize money, billions in advertising and became one of Ecclestones “free cash for showing up” teams, all while advertising for a manufacturer who has never had anything to do with F1. Renault got jack, no advertising, no prize money, no glory and now Red Bull acts like Renault are a bunch of fools who don’t know what they are doing.
        Red Bull’s sporting activities never involve sportsmanship or it’s promotion. Red Bull “gives you whines”

      • I think it was Hamilton…driving a station wagon, taking the plastic trophies; no one would believe Hamilton would do either of those things, it was the perfect cover.

    • Renault’s ratio of winning years/number of years competing is pretty impressive. Six of the last 10 championships and before with Benetton and Williams. I don’t think Renault now believing Red Bull is not a good good team to be partnered with is out of line, who berates their partner in public the way Red Bull do Renault? Four in a row and 2nd in 2014; Red Bull should “shut the fu*k up and row the boat” or in this case do what they always do and throw buckets of money at the problem.

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