Red Bull’s rivals are “afraid” to help the quadruple world champions amid an engine crisis that could drive the brand out of formula one, boss Christian Horner says.
With the team’s relationship with Renault in tatters, Mercedes and Ferrari are currently refusing to offer Red Bull an alternative supply of power units. But Toro Rosso, Red Bull’s junior team, is not hitting the same roadblock, boss Horner said. “If we were Toro Rosso, we could get an engine anywhere,” he told Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport. “We are just too strong. Everyone is afraid of us.”
Ferrari’s Maurizio Arrivabene commented to the Italian broadcaster Sky: “Let everyone talk, and once we have something to say, we will do so.” It is believed that Bernie Ecclestone is now working hard to broker a reconciliation between Red Bull and Renault, even though neither side appears overly keen. “For me personally,” said Toro Rosso driver Max Verstappen, “that would not be the best option.”
One conceivable scenario is that Red Bull stays with Renault while Toro Rosso switches to Ferrari power, but Verstappen told De Telegraaf newspaper: “Then I think Toro Rosso would be faster than Red Bull next year.”
And he also cannot imagine that Toro Rosso will find its own engine solution while Red Bull Racing is left stranded without a power unit. “I think Red Bull and Toro Rosso will either continue together or stop together,” he said. “The first option seems the most likely to me, but time is running out. “We need to know soon — after October, we can’t build a car in time,” said Verstappen. “For me personally, there are three options: Toro Rosso, Red Bull or both teams withdrawing,” said the 18-year-old.