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Posted By: James Allen  |  14 Sep 2011   |  3:43 pm GMT  |  101 comments

The decision of reigning F1 champions Red Bull and Renault to extend their deal with for a supply of customer engines for five more years was announced over the Monza weekend, before Sebastian Vettel went out and won a second race in a row on what’s always been considered a “power circuit”.

This deal is significant in that it means that not only will the team use the current V8 units with the Renault KERS system for 2012 and 2013, but is committed to the marque for the new generation of fuel efficient V6 1.6 litre turbo engines from 2014 onwards. Part of the deal is a technology collaboration between Red Bull Technology and Renault to work on innovations for the 2014 engine. These will benefit all Renault customers, which will also include Williams.

Despite occasional grumbles from Red Bull senior management about a lack of power over the last five seasons, the partnership with Renault has been very successful with both world titles last season seven victories and no engine failures in a 100% faultless record this season which is likely to lead to another clean sweep of titles.

With the Renault deal has come a technical and sponsor partnership with oil company Total. In addition to getting money from the deal, Renault also has branding on the drivers’ helmets and on the engine cover of the car. This reflects the company’s strategy for F1 to be a profit centre, rather than a cost. The Renault team, currently known as Lotus Renault GP, is owned by investment firm Genii and sponsored by Group Lotus. Renault’s only involvement is to supply engines, as it does to Red Bull. But there seems to be some activity around this team in terms of its ownership and branding moving forwards. The way is clear for it to rebrand as Lotus, if the two sides feel that this is appropriate.

Meanwhile Renault number two Carlos Tavares was asked recently by French colleagues about the possibility of Renault coming back as a team owner and he said, “Having an F1 team as a manufacturer is a double edged sword. You have to win. And if you do not win, it’s serious. The solution of being an engine supplier makes sense and is clearly more long term for a manufacturer.”

It’s clear that Renault Sport, the division of the company which runs the F1 engine programme, regards Red Bull as their number one team now, almost a works team and Christian Horner alluded to this when the announcement was made.

This is emphasised by statements from Renault about how they see the importance of the integration of the engine and the chassis aerodynamics, especially post 2014. They also couch their communications in terms of “They are world champions and we are world champions.” The evolution of the blown diffuser and Renault’s work on ignition timing to improve it are a good example of the close integration of the two sides.

There is also the Nissan/Infiniti connection, with Infiniti branding on the car and the likelihood that Red Bull will be able to benefit from Nissan/Renault battery technology in the post 2014 era, when electric becomes a more important part of the package than currently.

On a side note, young French driver Jean Eric Vergne is going to be doing some Friday driving for Toro Rosso shortly. But when it comes to the Young Guns test at Abu Dhabi, there seems to be a view that he might be given a run in the Red Bull car, as Daniel Ricciardo did last year.

This would make sense in terms of a benchmark. And as Ricciardo is now racing for HRT, he is ineligible for the Young Guns test, so they may as well turn to Vergne next.

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101 Comments
  1. LiteralF1 says:

    Very interesting to note that in Renaults mind, the silent success they get with Red Bull at the helm is preferable to running a “full blown” team. It’s almost like a win-win situation.

    Red Bull haven’t grumbled much recently about the engines’ lack of power. The Renault engine is a fine one with better drivability and fuel efficiency compared to it’s rivals. It’s also Renault in partnership with Red Bull that started the whole off throttle exhaust blown diffuser saga, which proved very successful towards the latter part of 2010 in their championship challenge and all throughout 2011. They have a very good synergistic system in place so this deal comes as no surprise.

    1. wayne says:

      Any idea if McLaren plan to build their own F1 engines, James, as we have the emotively named mp4-12c?

      1. Martin says:

        Hi Wayne,

        My understanding is that initially McLaren has a contract with Mercedes into the turbo era, so that is likely to be the initial engine. The road car engine is the engine is derived from an old Nissan race engine and developed with Ricardo. Ricardo is more known for gearboxes (including the Veyron’s) and while it is quite capable, it is not clear to me whether between McLaren and Ricardo there are the resources to compete with the major manufacaturers. The road car engine is unusual in being quite high reving for a turbo, but is otherwise not remarkable in its specifications (it is not to different to a GT2 RS engine). To me it is not really a pointer to a race engine program.

        I suspect Ron Dennis would love to have McLaren engine, as it would help the comparison with Ferrari.

        Cheers,

        Martin

      2. wayne says:

        Informative and insightful as always, Martin, thanks for the reply.

  2. ThomasG says:

    Predictions for 2012
    Team Lotus = Caterham GP
    Lotus Renault = Lotus GP
    Red Bull Racing = Red Bull Renault

    For 2013 (When Red Bull are tired of pouring in money in F1)

    Red Bull Renault = Renault GP

    1. . says:

      Red Bull saves more money than they spend into F1 (especially now they are winning championships which pays quite well). The exposure they get thanks to F1 is worth literally hundreds of millions in advertisement money they save.

      Is why Dietrich has no problem with ‘riots’ in his team that put the Red Bull brand in the news every day all over the media, hehe.

      Free publicity is something that everyone company desires, but very few manage to get…and then make money out of it as well.

      1. Nadeem says:

        RBE got bugger all exposure in Italy, probably about 5 laps in total

      2. wayne says:

        Yes, sometimes RBR’s dominant form works against them from a marketing standpoint. Who wants to watch lap after lap of Vetell all on his lonesome?

        McLaren and Mercedes dominated utterly the media coverage of the actual race, finishing 4th and 5th.

      3. Al says:

        Red Bull has never saved money advertising, because they never did advertise conventionally, they historically sponsored various Extreme Sports, now including F1.

        Personally I am amazed DM has not been tempted to cause more trouble between Finger and #2.

      4. wayne says:

        Red Bull advertised extensively in a conventional manner in the UK. Adverts were all over the TV.

    2. Jo Torrent says:

      RedBull racing will stay RedBull racing because of a deal with Infinity which belongs to Nissan which almost fully belongs to Renault.

      1. Chris Orr says:

        Yes, I have been wondering whether we will see an infiniti or a nissan f1 team.
        Maybe one day when Redbull have had enough like Bennetton did a few years ago.

      2. Wallers says:

        Ah, it’s the Renault Nissan Alliance. Neither own each other, it’s a sharing agreement. However to be a pedant, Wikipedia tells me that Nissan own 44% of Renault shares and Renault own 36% of Nissan. So you could really say that Nissan own Renault.

      3. Colin Macintosh says:

        Wikipedia is wrong !
        Renault own 43,44% of Renault shares and Nissan own 15% of Renault (non-voting).
        (Atlas Renault 2011).

      4. Wallers says:

        Blooming Wikipedia! I should have looked at the third link down on google! I stand corrected :)

    3. Sebee says:

      Red Bull – tired of pouring money?

      Not going to happen.

      At $3 per can they are not running out of money. If anything, they would dump Toro Rosso first, which they like for driver development and vote.

      I also can’t agree with you on the Red Bull Racing being changed to Red Bull Renault. Red Bull racing is their identity, one a marketing house like Red Bull will not compromise for the sake of a changeable component of an engine brand.

      Have we learned nothing from last 2 years? Red Bull is a Grade A operation, not Team Lotus Lada Caterham Renault Genii F1 Racing Enterprises Inc. Ltd. S.A. Esquire.

      1. ThomasG says:

        Yeah, they will obviously get rid of Torro Rosso – the most pointless team and least interesting team in F1.

      2. Bru72 says:

        Toro Rosso, where Vettel got his 1st win. Doesn’t seem pointless to me when it breeds drivers such as he.

    4. ESLKid75 says:

      Agreed with your 2012 predictions (although I’d see a Red Bull Infiniti, rather than Red Bull Renault), but you lost me with your 2013 predictions.

      I really don’t think Renault has ANY intentions of coming back to full team ownership. This last go round was just Briatore’s delusions of grandeur, and it didn’t work out so well…

      1. Flav was the ‘executioner’ as Piquet Jr. would put it.

        The company had a different vision with regards to F1 before Carlos Ghosn became the CEO of Renault-Nissan.

        Ghosn’s promotion was one of the reason why Fernando Alonso decided to join McLaren at the end of 2005. He was quite vocal about Renault not needing to be in F1.

      2. Marc says:

        2 wdc in 05 and 06. Renault actually did better over the years they were in f1 upon their return than mclaren I believe. Only Ferrari best them over the said time. Not so bad as far as I see it. Marc

      3. ESLKid75 says:

        In terms of image though, do people remember Alonso’s 2 world championships or do they remember Crashgate? That is what I was referred to when I said it “didn’t work out so well”…

        Agreed, their record wasn’t bad before that…

    5. Jarman says:

      Do you not think that Red Bull would stop spending money on lesser sports or events before they stop putting it into one of the number one sports in the world? They are getting massive marketing coverage by winning or even just competing at the top end of F1, the reason they got into it in the first place.

      I think things like all the extreme sports stars they sponsor would go first. The F1 team is definitely top of the pile.

      1. Rodger says:

        They are actually trying to slowly shut down their NASCAR operation.

    6. Benson Jutton says:

      Could be off the mark on all 3 there. Dont think F1 is a passing phase for Mr Mateschitz, Caterham likely to incorporate AirAsia in their name, Red Bull have Infiniti engines (yes, theyre Renault / Nissan) and what happens with the artist formerly known as Renault F1 is anyones guess, according to Joe Sawards blog!

      1. ACB says:

        Yes, after all the talk of Deitrich divesting himself of STR he now seems to be committed to taking it to another level. The branding of Caterham/Formula 1/AirAsia is also evidence that they’re intending to move up the pecking order as well.

    7. Stuart Harrison says:

      Red Bull joined the sport to win and win they have. While they continue to win, they will continue to “pour money” into the sport as it’s an incredible vehicle to advertise and further the Red Bull brand.

      As such I can’t see them wanting to play around with the naming (besides, I thought they’d aligned themselves with Infiniti not Renault as a brand?)

      I can see the other changes coming to pass, however!

      1. Sossoliso says:

        Red Bull does not “pour Money” into F1 anymore. The f1 outfit now pays for itself…and much more. While they are winning, Advertisers are falling over themselves to be associated with RBR plust the Price Money. You “Pour Money” in if you are a Williams/HRT/STR/Lotus/Virgin

    8. Jeff says:

      Given their recent sponsorship deal with Infiniti (Renault-owned Nissan’s premium brand), I think a more prominent Infiniti branding exercise would be more likely.

      Also, why would Red Bull quit pouring money in to a winning team? They may not win next year, but I’d be very surprised if they weren’t at least competitive, unless Adrian wrecks himself out of the picture in one of his classic race escapades.

      James – regarding the subject of pouring money into F1, do you have any recent information on the relative funding levels of the F1 teams? I’d be very interested to find out more about this subject. There have been lots of noises about budget reductions, but not a lot of public information on how much is actually being spent.

      1. ACB says:

        I was wondering where this leaves Infiniti as far as branding and technical contribution to RBR as well.

      2. Andrew Carter says:

        Autosport are suggesting that through Infinity Nissan will be helping out with battery technology for the 2014 KERS system, which will be more powerful and provide that power for longer, and since it seems to be the only area RBR struggle with at the moment it makes sense.

  3. Érico says:

    Why has nobody mentioned that Renault getting tied to Red Bull in the long term also leaves Mercedes tied to McLaren? Until they can make their own team a winner, and that still seams uncertain at best, despite Brawn working to put things together, they have only the british team as an option if they wish to sell winning engines.

    1. Jo Torrent says:

      McLaren wins are clearly McLaren wins. Mercedes have made no noise about their contribution to McLaren victories.
      The fact that McLaren decided to go into Sports cars market kind of forced Mercedes to go elsewhere.
      Mercedes is fully behind its team and wants to win with it definitely.

      On the other hand it doesn’t make sense for McLaren to race in Formula1 with someone else’s engine while manufacturing its own engines for its cars. Actually McLaren engines are made by Ricardo but very few know it.
      Every car maker comes to F1 with at least the engine. Sooner or later McLaren has to do it.

    2. C-M says:

      Mercedes will no be supplying McLaren with engines after a certain date. Remember, it was part of the breakup that the engine contract would cease in I think 2015

      1. wayne says:

        That does not mean they will not just sign a new agreement like Renault and RBR have just done.

      2. wayne says:

        Economies of scale for Mercedes and all that good stuff.

    3. Ian H says:

      With regards to McLaren do you think when the engine regs change in a few years time that they will drop Mercedes engines and produce their own, similar to what they are doing in their road cars?

      1. Liam in Sydney says:

        Yes, I think Mercedes Benz is certain to leave McLaren sometime over the next few years. Don’t be surprised if Mercedes Benz F1 starts poaching McLaren staff so they can leave their McLaren ties behind them. Once McLaren start ramping up their road car production, their business association makes no sense to me.

    4. Benson Jutton says:

      What about Force India?

      1. That team has not won since the 2003 Brazillian GP, when they were still known as Jordan.

        Mercedes GP is in a better shape I suppose.

  4. CheckOdds says:

    Clearely the partnership between Red Bull F1 Team and Renault is a successful one. Both titles last year, almost sure, both titles this year as well. They dominate the competition, ofcourse having Vettel as main driver, but the team and the motor supplier both have a great contribution to the success. Eagerly waiting to see what will happend in the next two seasons, and evem more from 2014 onwards.

    1. Sebee says:

      “Eagerly waiting to see what will happend in the next two seasons”

      We will start a new in-season game of cow tipping each GP weekend, drinking bull each time they win, and bringing cowbells to races. Whichever one you choose, you’re sure to be doing plenty of it next two seasons. More cowbell I say!

  5. Christopher Snowdon says:

    Good news this, Renault has always been a great supporter of F1, and is one of the best partners the sport has ever had (they’ve always been a success as an engine supplier and as a team in their own right).

    Just a quick one though to anyone out there who may know, Elf used to be part of the Renault package, why is that not the case anymore. Total used to be part of the Peugeot package!

    1. Karim says:

      Total owns Elf since 1999.

      Elf and Renault were tied because they were both owned by french government .

    2. Andy c says:

      Agreed. Renault belong in the sport, as do cosworth and also Honda ( hope they find a way back as engine suppliers).

      If the redbull deal ensures a great engine builder stays in f1 that’s good for the sport. Even if I don’t Want to see them beat mclaren ;-)

    3. ESLKid75 says:

      You are correct about Elf and Renault being together and Total being with Peugeot and Citroen. I can only assume this is due to Total buying Elf and Total being the brand they want to promote. I haven’t been back to France in a few years, so I’m not sure, but you see Total stations everywhere, but I can’t remember seeing Elf stations much last time around. I might be wrong on that though.

      1. Martin Collyer says:

        You are right about not seeing ELF very often in France. It hasn’t completely disappeared but it’s rare now.

        Martin

    4. Matt Devenish says:

      Total own Elf

    5. Marc says:

      Elf was taken over by total/fina. Marc

    6. Ian Dawson says:

      Total bought Elf and Fina several years ago, but very small Elf logos still remain on the Renault engine cover.

    7. T.D. McWilliams says:

      Elf merged with Total in 2000.

    8. Philip T says:

      I believe Total owns Elf and has for the last few years wished to push the Total brand with Renault. Ifyou look on the engine cover of the Renaults of the last few years it still says ‘Renault elf’ despite Total also being on the car.

    9. Lux says:

      Total bought Elf about 15 years ago; after a while running both brands in parallel, Elf has become their cheap fuel brand therefore not really appropriate for racing. Rumors in France are that the Elf brand is going to be axed altogether in the near future (at least to the common automotive public).

    10. NorwayKnut says:

      Elf is a sub-brand of Total. The brands are used together or separate. Often the ads says ‘ELF a brand of TOTAL’

      If you’ve seen the 2011 Renault F1 merchandise catalogue it’s quite clear what’s going on. On the cover and in the centre of the picture is the Red Bull F1 car and in the background a bit out of focus you can see the Lotus Renault car.
      On the first 10 pages or so, there’s a lot of RBR Renault merchandise and then a few pages with Lotus Renault GP merchandise..

    11. Aaron James says:

      Elf is now just a brand of the Total group.

  6. Sebee says:

    Why are they getting closer?

    Like everyone, the French like winners. They go where the grass is green.

    Their own team was losing and causing them PR headaches – they dumped it. Red Bull is winning and providing them with positive exposure while minimizing their F1 costs.

    Who doesn’t want to be associated with Vettel and Red Bull right now? Who didn’t want to be associated with Ferrari between 2000-2004? If this keeps up I just might get myself a Red Bull shirt to jump on this band wagon. It’s the only way, since I don’t like that sugary drink much personally.

  7. Michael S says:

    I think this has worked out as a great marriage. I also think Newey loves being able to build his car around an engine so having RB input in the technology side with renault is huge….

  8. Jo Torrent says:

    I thought that the Williams Renault deal was a special one and that at the beginning of this year Williams was supposed to be the team closer to Renault.

    Things change quickly it seems…

    1. I think it is a case of not putting all your eggs in the sme basket. Supplying 4 out of 12 teams gives you a decent chance of winning comes Sunday.

      At the moment, RBR is on top. It took Benetton/Renault ten years to go back to winning ways. Williams will probably get back there one day.

      If 2005 and 2009 are any guides, who knows which team comes out on top with the 2014 regulations?

  9. terryshep says:

    It might be satisfying for a Manufacturer’s ego to own a team, but supplying a successful team with its engine and having the sort of branding Renault can get, makes better sense.

    After all, when you see that Red Bull Renault has won a race, which bit of the name do you associate with cars? Engine suppliers are on a winner really, because none of the names coupled with their brand swamps their identity as car-makers.

  10. Werewolf says:

    Renault and Adrian Newey are both masters of pushing the development envelope, so increased collaboration makes sense.

    Just a thought, if Mercedes follow Renault in expanding its F1 supply, will there be room for Cosworth in 2014, especially if another manufacturer joins the club?

    1. Don’t forget Craig Pollock’s Pure.

      Having Gilles Simon on board is a serious asset (he used to work under Todt at Ferrari and followed him to the FIA).

  11. Jo Torrent says:

    Is it is easy for tv viewers to see a car racing with Infinity and Renault logos on its bodywork ???

    What is the viewer supposed to think 3 cylinders by Renault and 3 by Infinity !!!

    It is the consequence of too much Commerce in this world and little innovation. There was a time when engineers were respected. If the Eiffel tower was built today, the name of M. Eiffel would’ve never been mentioned. In the USA, they would call it the Pepsi/Coca tower. In Europe by the name of the guy who put most money in it & in Africa by the name of the dictator or by the date at which he seized power.

    The commercial aspect is so important, we end up with oddities such as a team named Renault sponsored by Lotus and owned by GENII which borrowed money from Renault bank to buy the team.
    Why is that because Renault image has been damaged ?
    Why because the chassis team cheated against Renault will ?
    Why because the chassis team has nothing to do with Renault and is out of control of Renault. It’s a PR operation instead of a technical one. Actually Renault sells to the viewer a know how she doesn’t possess on the chassis side and so does Mercedes with Brawn and BMW with Sauber.

  12. How quickly will this view from Renault towards Red Bull change if Williams Renault starts becoming successful?

    1. Liam in Sydney says:

      Quite quickly I think. There is very little loyalty in this sport, one of the most cut-throat performance-orientated there is. It is easy to see a new team who may become very successful putting more and more influence in the design and performance of their engine, making life harder for the has-been.

  13. Rob Newman says:

    Thanks for the article James. Very interesting. Looks like it is a win win situation for both Red Bull and Renault.

    It is good news for teams going for Renault engines but for most of them their achilles’ heel has been not the engine, but aero.

    This season has been a fantastic one and I am sure next year will be a cracking one.

  14. Sebee says:

    One more thing…speaking of Red Bull, does the paddock and media miss the F1 Red Bulletin magazines that were printed each day of the weekend?

      1. f1a says:

        Would you like to be any more mysterious Mr. Allen?!? :)

      2. Paddock – yes
        Media – no

        I thought the Red Bulletin was still being published though. Isn’t Anthony Rowlinson the Editor?

  15. Roddy says:

    any chance that this commitment from renault can help to resurrect the french grand prix?

    1. Andy C says:

      Hasnt it already been agreed that Spa will alternate with Magny Cours? Or did I imagine that recently.

      Still seems crazy to me that Spa could me a one in two years event. Its an absolute must have track in my view along with suzuka, monza, silverstone, monaco.

      Would be great to see the French GP reinstated though. As its close ;-)

      1. Sossoliso says:

        Unfortunately the “S” infront of Spar is just that .. an “S” and not a “$” sign. F1 is about making money and not racing.. If you happen to have a bit of racing in the process, then good for you!

      2. Andrew Carter says:

        I think the talk is about Paul Ricard and not Magny Cours.

      3. I was listening to the Renault Sport F1 podcast (the French one – the English one is hosted by Ted Kravitz) in which Remi Taffin, Head of Track Operations I think, was saying that the two circuits they used to test reliability on the dyno are Spa and Monza.

        With both of them being so unique, I am sure that there’s more than just us the fans/spectators who would miss those two key tracks. A lot of engineers would too!

        As for the French Grand Prix, we would need a fairly strong driver rather than winning engines to lure people back to F1. Less fans also equal a bare bone TV coverage. I saw Monza 2010 on TF1 and just the race commentary is miles away from Martin and DC.

  16. Jez says:

    Very interesting comment “Having an F1 team as a manufacturer is a double edged sword. You have to win. And if you do not win, it’s serious.”

    They must get their name off the Pseudo Lotus, or take the team back to keep their name…

  17. Adrian Newey Jnr says:

    No mention of Renault developing the blown exhaust solution? Sure they might have theoretically been down on power, but the blown exhaust was this years’ winning concept. Arguably it was being used last year too.

  18. paulusa says:

    If Magny-Cours is the planned venue, I certainly hope not.

  19. Dabet M. says:

    James,
    J. Barnard or A. Newey? Honda in the late 80′s, or Renault in the last few years?
    (I’m sorry to exclude R. Brawn, and the late 90′s Ferrari, but I consider both of them product of J. Barnard)

  20. ThomasG says:

    Haha, I see that my Red Bull to Renault speculation got some attention. Well, in all honesty it’s probably not very likely, but you never know. The Red Bull operation is expensive, and there will come a point where they will no longer dominate, the original targets of Mr Mateschitz have all been achieved and Bernie money won’t cover the costs. I already suspect that Red Bull, despite the handsome pay from winning the championship, are booking huge losses each year. It really depend on whether or not they can motivate this as a marketing expense. Does Red Bull Racing sell enough cans to cover their expenses?

    All I’m saying is that Red Bull is a five year old team in F1, despite having been there as a sponsor for 20 years. Things CAN happen.

    This would be a corporate decision based on number, although I sincerely hope that this is not the case. Red Bull is good for the mix – but team Horner / Newey are not Red Bull – and the price tag of the team for any wealthy taker must be temptingly high if Red Bull decide to pull out on the top of their game.

  21. Red5 says:

    I always thought, perhaps unfairly, that the Renault engine was the weakest link in Red Bulls armour. Primarily because they need to match RBs investment and commitment in order to keep their cars at the front.

    I now wonder how much of these long term plans are linked to Horner and Newey maintaining this winning combination? Dietrich isn’t known for his patience, is he? The money will continue to flow only as long as results are forthcoming.

    1. kidVermin says:

      okay, and where was the money flowwing from while the team was floundering in the midfield. Let’s admire Dietrich’s commitment to F1 and not look at it as if he’s looking to make a quick buck and then bail, true he’s maximizing on his Championship winning team at the moment but who wouldn’t, I’m a McLaren fan and McLaren last won titles years ago but they are still riding their past success like nobody’s business along with Ferrari. Give Credit where it’s due. Even before the championships, we had Torro Rosso, RedBull racing and arguably the strongest Driver development in F1… Thank You Mr D.Mateshitz. Your money was talking long before the championships rolled in, you deserve all the success and I reluctantly wish that you reap much more.

      1. kidVermin says:

        yeah JUST another DRINKS company afterall…

  22. Forzaminardi says:

    Renault have missed a trick by somehow letting Infiniti get the most visible branding on the Red Bull car. One assumes if they wanted that deal could be revisited, but it seems odd that they should regard Red Bull as a ‘works’ team while letting one of their smallest brands get the visible exposure.

    At the same time, the emotional appeal of the Williams Renault name, plus the heritage of their collaboration in the Clio Williams means that it will be difficult to resist regarding that relationship as a significant one, even if Williams continue to struggle.

    Renault will have to be very careful here to avoid getting into a bit of a pickle again, just as the Renault/Genii/Lotus mess seems to be getting tidied up.

  23. Dave says:

    I’ve been saying for the past 5 years that the most cost effective, efficent and most productive way for any manufacturer to be involved with F1 is to ONLY supply engines. If their engines win the manufacturer can use that in their marketing, if their engines don’t win, keep quiet, nobody blames the engines!

    Manufacturers know how to make engines, race teams know how to go racing.

  24. George C. says:

    A bit off- topic,
    -if it’s correct there was an information that SV advised stewards to closely consider circumstances regarding his overtaking maneuver vs FA at Curva Grande, when he was forced out of track at over 320 km/h. After the race FA excused but evidently it was not enough.
    James, any feedback?

  25. Jonathan says:

    I don’t know why manufacturers feel they have to win. Toyota, BMW and Honda never won anything, and it didn’t make me think any less of them at the time.

    What made me think of less of them was when they abruptly pulled out of the sport and left hundreds of people without jobs.

  26. jonrob says:

    Renault KERS system eh? where have then been hiding that? I am sure that Red Bull would have liked to have had a decent KERS.

    Interesting too that if the engine and chassis aero is to be developed together, then this rather creates a favourite customer, or one with whom a closer design relationship is essential. Unless of course Renault have enough parallel people to develop 4 different programs with Chinese walls between. (this is normal practice in engineering design companies)
    So Renault will become a design partner rather than just an engine supplier.
    Do engine suppliers count in the RRA?

  27. Bevelling machine says:

    It was the RBR team.

  28. Adrian Newey Jnr says:

    James – any idea on what it costs a manufacturer to run an engine operation compared to a full team? I realise some engines would be subsidised (or free?) whilst others would be on a customer basis.

    Personally I think Renault wanted to distance themselves from the day-to-day decisions of running a team which unfortunately resulted in the Singapore crash-gate. By being an engine manufacturer they can pass the blame onto the team.

    1. James Allen says:

      At the moment with engine freeze, not as much as in the past, but gearing up for 2014, costs will increase and this will be passed on to customers.

  29. Prisoner Monkeys says:

    If Renault severed ties with the Genii-run Renault team and started building a closer relationship with Red Bull, perhaps we could see Robert Kubica alongside Sebastian Vettel in 2013. I don’t think it’s as crazy as it sounds – if I were Kubica, I would be no hurry to get back into Formula 1. It would be the ultimate goal, but not something that has to be done straight away; I can see Kubica spending 2012 racing in Formula Renault 3.5 to get his competitive edge back. Meanwhile, Renault form tighter links with Red Bull and when there’s no immediately-apparent candidate to replace Webber (I think Alguersuari, Buemi and Ricciardo are all lacking the X-factor needed for a World Championship team), Dietrich Mateschitz gets a call from the Powers That Be at Renault who point out that Robert Kubica has fully recovered and has just had an excellent season in Formula Renault, and that they hear there is a vacancy at Red Bull, and maybe we could put two and two together …

    1. krieng says:

      Robert will hard to recover his race craft to the same level he use to have. but if he can do, this will be a big plot for advertise the Red bull. I am not sure someone at red bull see in this way or not.

  30. Alex says:

    The comparison between Benetton and Red Bull is an especially valid one. Renault Engines in a dominant Benetton championship winning car ended up as RenaultGP. They’ve come in and out of the sport before and they could do it again. I personally think that no other manufacturer has been cannier in winning championships, be it through engines or with an actual team, they are always there and are always talked/raved about.

  31. coal crusher says:

    It is good news for teams going for Renault engines but for most of them their achilles’ heel has been not the engine, but aero.

  32. Pawel says:

    To me RBS are gambling. I can see kind of risk taken by them that may be rewarded by soome business calculations uknown by now..

  33. JEVthebest says:

    Vergne rocks!!!!!!!!

  34. Greg says:

    I’ve always wanted to know, what is a “works team”?

    1. James Allen says:

      Factory supported, ie not paying for engines and the factory’s number 1 team

      1. Greg says:

        Ahh I was thinking it was something along those lines, thanks for clearing it up JA

  35. It is nice to know about the Renault team as they are champions in the F1 car race. I like Sebastian Vettel and I think he is a good driver for Renault. Anyway, thank you for sharing this information with everyone and keep sharing some new information like this one in future.

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