As TJ13 has been reporting, the destiny of the Milton Keynes based F1 team is hurtling towards a conclusion.
Mercedes and Honda have ruled out supplying Red Bull Racing with a 2016 power unit, leaving just Ferrari as a possibility were the agreement with Renault disolved.
However, Helmut Marko has made it clear they will not accept a ‘B’ spec engine which is all Ferrari are offering Red Bull. “If we don’t have a competitive engine we will leave Formula 1.”
The breaking news from the Sochi paddock via AMuS is that Ferrari have now refused to supply Red Bull Racing with and engine for 2016. Ferrari ironically have said they will provide Red Bull’s younger and more exciting Italian sister – Toro Rosso – with a power unit next year.
Dietrich Mateschitz on Wednesday this week, set the end of October as a hard deadline for a decision on an 2016 engine. No deal done would see the threat to withdraw RBR from Formula One.
Bernie Ecclestone has been working hard behind the scenes to ensure Red Bull have an engine supply for 2016, however he told assembled reporters in Sochi that he was ‘powerless’ to force Ferrari to agree a deal with Red Bull.
The same is clearly true of Mercedes.
TJ13 revealed here two weeks ago that Renault discussed with Red Bull the opportunity to by the Milton Keynes based team. This of course would leave Lotus out in the cold.
Further TJ13 disclosed in the past 7 days that Red Bull, have refused a final offer from Renault to dissolve their 2016 engine supply agreement.
The divorcees are looking more and more like they may have one last try, have another baby (RB12) together – to see if it helps improve their own relationship.
That said, Christian Horner recently stated that he believed Renault are, “two to three years” behind Ferrari and Mercedes.
The latest paddock gossip is that Christian Horner will “have a go”, Ross Brawn style, should Dietrich Mateschitz pull the rug from under Milton Keynes team.
Even if this is the case, an engine agreement must be found and for 2016 neither Mercedes or Ferrari will supply an ‘A’ spec engine.
Speaking to SKY Sports live after FP1 in Sochi, a grave looking Christian Horner refused to confirm Ferrari have refused to supply Red Bull with a 2016 engine. “Nothing is fixed – everything is open”.
Meanwhile sources close to Ferrari are still repeating the news that Ferrari will not supply Red Bull with a 2016 engine.
Thankfully given the processional nature of F1 racing and the predictability of the championships, at least Red Bull Racing are supplying the fans with some level of excitement in this rolling news story.