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Renault will leave F1, warns Horner

NEWS STORY
08/06/2015

Christian Horner warns that Renault will walk away from F1 unless it is allowed to develop its engine next year.

Whilst the Red Bull team boss' call doesn't come as a surprise, eyebrows will surely be raised since it is his team that has been most publicly critical of the French manufacturer this year.

Such was the Renault's uncompetitiveness this weekend, for once even Daniel Ricciardo lost his smile, though it was Max Verstappen, at sister team Toro Rosso who became the first to take a grid penalty for exceeding the allowed four units.

Ironically, whilst it has often been felt that Renault has never fully exploited its successes in F1, now that things are not going so well the French manufacturer is very much in the firing line.

Next year, its last under its current deal with Red Bull, Renault is seeking to be allowed to develop its power unit over the course of the season, but Mercedes, which powered seven of yesterday's top ten finishers, is standing firm keen to stick to the current rules that requires unanimous agreement between the teams for the regulations to be relaxed.

Such a move, warns Horner, will drive Renault out of the sport.

"The situation is we are at a precarious point in terms of Renault's commitment to the future," he told reporters in Montreal. "If you are effectively shutting that down in February, you are almost waving goodbye to them," he added, referring to the pre-season (2016) engine freeze.

"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."

Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul has already warned that Renault is looking at a number of options, including buying a team or, indeed, leaving the sport.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by F One, 13/06/2015 11:42

"Can Horner not just shut up?"

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2. Posted by petes, 12/06/2015 4:08

"Well you'll come out okay if they do Chris baby - I see a couple of no-name (to me) hack journos have nominated you for the top job......"

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3. Posted by Canuck, 10/06/2015 12:33

"For the FIA to mandate such complex engine regulations and then freeze them so early with this rule of Feb 28 is completely ridiculous. If Honda is also frozen after just 1 yr of development, how long will they stay? Do you think you can attract new engine manufacturer with such limiting rules? F1 is doing everything to go the Indy Car route, Standardization to stifle innovation, and when they do try to go with innovation they shut the doors to development. I think they should control it through cost caps -- ie you can do what you want to the power units but can not charge more that $10 million per year to your customers. "

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4. Posted by JackTheCat, 10/06/2015 9:04

"Another race , another woeful performance by Red Bull, another Renault threaten to quit soundbite. This is only marginally more boring than the 'racing'."

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5. Posted by qml, 09/06/2015 22:48

"I'm sure it's been said before, but really Red Bull really should stop and have a hard look at themselves... They won 4 championships and nobody complained it wasn't fair, nobody threatened to leave nor did they winge to the FIA. Wait another few years, work your buns off and shut up and get on with the job "

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6. Posted by Yeyox02, 09/06/2015 22:39

"It seems that nobody remembers when Horner and Red Bull took Mercedes to court for alleged illegal tests. Sooner or later everything in life has its own return. I hope Mercedes will smash rivals for years because they are getting plenty of data that will help them for the future no matter whether rules change. At the moment they are perhaps 2 or 3 years ahead."

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7. Posted by VC10-1103, 09/06/2015 19:41

""if renault do get fed up we could soon be on to spec mercedes engine series and a singel ferrari engine and effectivley f1 is dead."

I think you are forgetting the Cosworth DFV + Ferrari years. I know there was BRM/Matra but their not worth including after '71."

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8. Posted by nnails, 09/06/2015 11:52

"the rules state they are not allowed to develop engine after 2016. if its still 50 to 100 hp down they might as well quit. no point turning up each week to be beaten and not being able to do anything about it. i bet honda wishing they not getting involved in f1 too.

if renault do get fed up we could soon be on to spec mercedes engine series and a singel ferrari engine and effectivley f1 is dead.

what made f1 special for me was the fact they could do what they wanted in reason and if it carrys on way its going i will be off to watch wec instead of it

"

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9. Posted by Jonno, 09/06/2015 11:32

"Renault may choose to leave because they're being bad mouthed all the time by their only customer. The Red Bullies are bad losers. Too bad. If they leave, they won't be missed."

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10. Posted by gturner38, 09/06/2015 11:07

"Ignoring the fact that Renault can still develop their engine so long as they claim it is in the name of reliability, what's the worst thing that happens if Renault leaves? Two teams need to contract with Mercedes, Ferrari or, heaven forbid, Honda. The guy that was going to take his ball and go home if the rules weren't changed mid-season to slow Mercedes shouldn't be the one talking about having a "grown-up think.""

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11. Posted by ape, 09/06/2015 8:21

"Very good news for Sauber,Lotus, Force India if Renault leave together with RB and STR. "

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12. Posted by Dutchy, 09/06/2015 7:12

"Maybe somebody knows what the regulations would say if the entity Renault indeed left and they would introduce Nissan engines instead? "

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13. Posted by petes, 09/06/2015 5:43

"I'm sure Renault can speak for themselves Mr Horner. No need to put words in their mouth."

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14. Posted by stackvideo, 08/06/2015 22:27

"Someone has to make a decision on what's best for Formula 1. Self interest by the teams, BE and CVC needs to be taken out of the equation. The FIA needs a captain at the helm and not a cabin boy. "

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15. Posted by Kkiirmki, 08/06/2015 21:38

"Toys...pram...Renault."

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