Horner wants engine allocation increased


In the wake of the revelation that the only driver starting Sunday's Italian Grand Prix from the position in which they qualified was Lewis Hamilton, Red Bull team boss Christian Horner was asked why the sport cannot agree on an alternative to the much-disliked engine penalty system.

With a straight face, the Briton told reporters that one of the biggest hurdles facing the sport is the self-interest of the teams.

Of course, his two drivers were among those hit hardest, for despite qualifying second and third, due to their various grid penalties the pair started the race 13th (Verstappen) and 16th Ricciardo.

With both drivers likely to incur further penalties in the remaining 7 races, and aware that next season sees the engine and component allocation reduced to three, Horner is calling for the allocation to return to 2016 levels of five units.

"For me that should be number one on the agenda for the next strategy meeting," says Horner.

"I tried to get it changed at an earlier meeting in the year but there was no support for it," he added, the Briton clearly not having taken on board the fact that the Mercedes-powered teams, for example, are still, for the most part, on their third units.

"I would hope that would now perhaps be different with teams incurring and staring down the barrel of further penalties between now and the end of the year," he continued.

"It's not saving the cost because the engines are going on a world tour anyway," he insisted, "they're being used and you're just incurring penalties as a result. Perhaps we need to get back to a more equitable balance. Maybe five engines is the right number rather than four going to three.

"This (rule) has done nothing positive since it was introduced," he continued. "What concerns me is that we are now going to three engines for next year, with more races. To me, that should be number one on the agenda at the next Strategy Group meeting.

Of course, if the Red Bull's had the ultra-reliable Mercedes engines in the back, or even Ferraris, we are sure Mr Horner would be more than sympathetic to those teams running Renault power unit and calling for the same change to the regulations.

What was that about self-interest, Christian?

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Published: 05/09/2017
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