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Red Bull threatens to quit Formula One

Wide World of Sports logo Wide World of Sports 5/09/2018 Brett Graham

The Red Bull Formula One team has sensationally threatened to quit the sport should their new deal with engine suppliers Honda “not work as expected.”

Red Bull’s outspoken motorsport advisor Helmut Marko has issued the threat, which could see the team walk away from the sport it dominated from 2010-2013.

Red Bull will end their 12-year association with Renault at the end of 2018, switching to Honda engines for 2019.

a truck that is driving down the road © Provided by Nine Digital Pty Ltd “We are pleased with the great cooperation with Honda for the coming years, and if this cooperation, for whatever reason, does not work as expected, then Red Bull will leave Formula 1,” Marko told Speedweek.

“The cooperation with Honda has been running very well with Toro Rosso so far,” added Marko, in reference to Red Bull's junior team, who switched to Honda engines this season.

“After the McLaren disaster, Honda was close to a departure from Formula 1 at the end of 2017 and we really had to convince the Japanese in intensive conversations that they could resume with us to start.”

Daniel Ricciardo wearing glasses © Provided by Nine Digital Pty Ltd Honda re-entered Formula One with McLaren in 2015, but their three year partnership produced little more than aggravation, with the engine hopelessly underpowered and unreliable. McLaren ended the deal at the conclusion of the 2017 season, with then-team boss Eric Bouiller describing the relationship as a “proper disaster.”

Red Bull will have a new driver lineup for 2019, with Australia’s Daniel Ricciardo already confirming he’s leaving the team to join Renault, with Frenchman Pierre Gasly taking his place alongside Max Verstappen.

The latest comments are far from the first time Marko has threatened that Red Bull will quit the sport. The controversial Austrian is rarely far from the headlines, often suggesting team owner Dietrich Mateschitz will walk away from his investment in the sport if he doesn’t get his way.

Red Bull has struggled since the switch to hybrid engines in 2014, finding themselves consistently behind Mercedes and Ferrari in the battle for race wins. The team is currently third in the championship ahead of next week’s Singapore Grand Prix.

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