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New rules see Red Bull drinks company increase investment in its F1 team by 300%

NEWS STORY
23/09/2017

The new regulations for 2017, not to mention the loss of title sponsor Infiniti, saw Red Bull Racing's costs increase by 9.2% last year, according to a report by Forbes.

The Austrian-owned, Milton Keynes based outfit, saw its financial statement for 2016 released today and it reveals that the Red Bull drinks company had to increase its investment in the F1 team from 10.1m in 2015 to 40.6m.

One of the main reasons for the increase in investment, other than the loss of Infiniti, and such things as staff bonuses paid out as a result of 2016's two wins, is that the regulation changes for 2017 meant a total redesign of the car and as the work was carried out last year the costs are reflected in the financial statement.

Though the team signed new sponsorship deals with a number of companies last year, including Aston Martin, Puma and TAG Heuer, this fell short of the money previously handed over by Infiniti.

Furthermore, while Red Bull is one of three teams which receive a 37% share of F1’s annual $100m bonus prize pot, its share of the main prize pot - which equates to 47.5% of the underlying profits of the commercial rights holder - its fourth place in the 2015 standings, on which its share is calculated, meant a further drop in income.

Ironically, despite the increased investment due to the new regulations, the Austrian team has now slipped to third in the standings behind Ferrari.

As if all this wasn't enough, despite Christian Horner's - and Renault's - evasiveness over the Singapore Grand Prix weekend - it appears the French manufacturer is to end its engine supply to Red Bull at the end of 2018, leaving the team seeking a new supplier.

Having dismissed reports that Porsche might buy the team, Horner hinted that salvation may come in the shape of Aston Martin; Red Bull Technology working with the iconic manufacturer to develop the Valkyrie which is expected to be the world’s fastest street-legal car when it launches in 2019.

However, speaking in Singapore, though admitting increased sponsorship might yet be possible, Aston Martin's CEO, Andy Palmer, admitted that while his company wants to be involved in the sport - having attended the various meetings of the Power Unit Working Group, as have Cosworth and Volkswagen - it cannot do so until the new (for 2021) engine formula has been agreed.

The Briton made it clear the new regulations for 2021 must mean engines that are far less complex than at present and less expensive.

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