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Red Bull tries to calm Toro Rosso-Renault row

  • Published on 12 Nov 2017 10:27
  • comments 8
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Red Bull has stepped in to calm a spiralling dispute between its junior F1 team Toro Rosso and mutual engine supplier Renault. Franz Tost reacted furiously in Brazil when his Renault counterpart Cyril Abiteboul suggested Toro Rosso's spate of reliability problems was "not a coincidence".

In a furious statement, Toro Rosso reacted by revealing it is running short on Renault-supplied spare parts, and hinted that Renault could actually be sabotaging the Faenza based team: "We mustn't forget that they are fighting with Toro Rosso for a better position in the constructors' championship," said the statement. "As suggested by Mr Abiteboul, the situation may not be a coincidence".

That suggestion reportedly infuriated Abiteboul, who was subsequently seen in an angry exchange in the Interlagos paddock with Dr Helmut Marko. With Tost refusing to apologise, the next rumour was that Renault could immediately break the Toro Rosso contract due to damage to the French carmaker's reputation, leaving the team without engines in Abu Dhabi.

Marko, a top Red Bull official, moved to calm the spiralling situation: "As usual at the end of another long season, emotions are running high but Renault is a valued relationship and will remain so," he said in Brazil. "There has never been any question that we have not been treated fairly and equitably by our engine suppliers, and that is still true today."

Replies (8)

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  • xoya

    Posts: 563

    French team + french automobile federation + Alain Prost = I am not surprised they are playing political games.

    • + 0
    • Nov 12 2017 - 10:46
  • Who would have thought Marko would be the calm one

    • + 0
    • Nov 12 2017 - 10:51
    • Well, it isnt a rule if it doesnt have exceptions, and Marko being calm certainly seem to be that. :)

      • + 0
      • Nov 12 2017 - 12:48
  • Their relationship is valued until it isnt. Red Bull will play their game with Renault, probably more carefully this time compared to what happened last time, until they find something else.

    As for Toro Rosso's current situation: It would ultimately benefit Renault to screw with them, so its possible, but I dont think its likely. If anything, I think its the results of Renault's "excellent services" thats beginning to show. It was pretty obvious that Renault's unwillingness to upgrade their unit anymore past the halfway mark, especially when they still had severe problems with their package, coupled with their general poor ability to supply their teams in time (this isnt the first time) would leave marks.

    • + 0
    • Nov 12 2017 - 12:54
    • mbmwe36

      Posts: 533

      It would certainly benefit them short-term. However, long-term it would be a disaster! Because somehow it would get out that they'd sabotaged them, and that would make what happened in Singapore seem like a day at the park in terms of direct repercussions not to mention that pretty much nobody would be interested in working with them again. So I don't see it, especially since the reward is rather small anyway.

      I kinda see Red Bull biting their tongue here. If that Honda unit proves do be somewhat decent, I could see this relationship blowing the f up around the start of the next season. However, if the Honda unit continues to be useless, they'll have to make it work until something better comes along, and Marko knows that

      • + 0
      • Nov 12 2017 - 13:18
    • Thats sort of why I at least hope they dont do this intentionally. It isnt good for the sport if one of the engine suppliers willingly sabotages one of their current suppliers. Wouldnt exactly make teams more willing to partner with Renault later on, either.

      Thats pretty much my take on it. Red Bull cant afford having a situation like they had back when they ditched Renault, only to find themselves without a supplier, and had to come crawling back with a bag full of money from TAG in tow. One way or another, Red Bull will find another partner so that it can become a works team. I dont think Honda and Renault will remain as uncompetitive in 2018, the only questions are: will one of them be able to match Ferrari, and which will it be?

      • + 0
      • Nov 12 2017 - 15:39
  • Barron

    Posts: 625

    Todt is talking out of his backside. There is no way in hell Renault would deliberately ‘sabotage’ TR (mind you, it is a French word!) and Cyril should have been a bit more circumspect in his critique of TR’s operating methods. I have no doubt that cooling is an issue which is chassis related but Cyril should have chosen his words more carefully.

    Lookout McLaren! This is what you have to look forward to and it increasingly looks as if you are treading the wrong path. Merde!

    • + 0
    • Nov 13 2017 - 11:48
    • At least they seem to enjoy walking on that part, strangling themselves and hitting themselves in the bum with a hammer meanwhile.

      • + 0
      • Nov 13 2017 - 20:43

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