Decision leaves Red Bull’s two teams looking for a new engine provider and F1 with just three power unit manufacturers from 2022
By James Galloway
Last Updated: 02/10/20 9:50am
Honda have announced they will withdraw from Formula 1 at the end of the 2021 season.
The Japanese manufacturer provide engines to both Red Bull and AlphaTauri and leaves both teams looking for new suppliers from 2022.
Honda, who initially returned to F1 after a nine-year absence in 2015 with McLaren, have said they are leaving in order to “strive for the realisation of carbon neutrality by 2050” and research into new power unit technologies.
Red Bull, who switched from Renault to Honda power from last year, say they “understand and respect” the Japanese manufacturer’s reasons for leaving and that the move does not impact their own commitment to Formula 1.
“As a team we understand how difficult it has been for Honda Motor Company to reach the decision to step back from Formula One at the end of the 2021 season,” said Red Bull team principal Christian Horner.
“The shifting focus within the automotive industry has led to Honda’s decision to re-deploy their resources and we understand and respect the reasoning behind this. Their decision presents obvious challenges for us as a team but we have been here before and with our strength in depth we are well prepared and equipped to respond effectively, as we have proven in the past.
“Whilst we are disappointed not to continue our partnership with Honda, we are enormously proud of our joint success, delivering five wins and 15 podiums for both Red Bull owned teams and we thank everyone at Honda for their extraordinary efforts and commitment.
“Our joint focus for the remainder of the 2020 and 2021 seasons are unchanged, to fight for victories and challenge for the championship.
“As a signatory to Formula One’s latest Concorde Agreement, Red Bull Racing remains committed to the sport in the long term and we look forward to embarking on a new era of innovation, development and success. As a group, we will now take the time afforded to us to further evaluate and find the most competitive power unit solution for 2022 and beyond.”
After a torrid three-season reunion with McLaren, Honda had started to turn around their F1 fortunes with AlphaTauri from 2018 before joining forces with the senior Red Bull team as well the following year and winning three races last year.
Both Red Bull and AlphaTauri have won a Grand Prix apiece so far in 2020, with Honda the only engine maker other than Mercedes to win races.
More to follow…
Source : Sky Sports