Feb.8 (GMM) Franz Tost has hinted that Red Bull’s entire F1 project could be in jeopardy if the sport doesn’t agree to an engine development ‘freeze’ for 2022.
If the ‘freeze’ is imposed, Red Bull is poised to take over Honda’s operations and go it alone with its own engine program from 2022-2024 – ahead of all-new regulations for 2025.
A vote on the matter is scheduled for February 11.
“I am in favour of the Freeze because it disturbs competitiveness if someone always wins,” Haas boss Gunther Steiner told n-tv.
“I don’t want to criticise the great job Mercedes did, but we have to keep the sport competitive because otherwise it gets boring. That’s what Niki (Lauda) would have said,” he smiled.
“We don’t race for ourselves, we race for our audience. We have to be mature enough to say that maybe we take a step back to take two steps forward.”
It is rumoured that the other teams and manufacturers will also vote in favour of the freeze – but Alpha Tauri boss Tost is not so sure.
“This is the leading manufacturers’ usual game,” Tost, who runs Red Bull’s second Honda-powered team, told motorsport-magazin.com.
“Even if they keep saying that they agree, basically they don’t. They just want to buy time.”
Tost said Red Bull simply reverting to its former customer Renault deals after Honda’s withdrawal is not an option for 2022.
“It’s difficult without a power unit,” he said when asked what will happen if the ‘freeze’ is voted down.
“Renault has a works team so I can hardly imagine that we would get a power unit with which we can compete successfully.
“You have to assume that Red Bull and (Dietrich) Mateschitz have different demands. They want to compete in the world championship,” Tost insisted. “They need appropriate material.”