Red Bull's Dr Helmut Marko has said that the energy drinks team is watching Honda's engine development very closely. Honda returned to the sport in 2015 in a partnership with McLaren, supplying them with power units.
However, after three disastrous seasons, the partnership came to an end. Earlier in the year, Honda revealed that it would be running with Toro Rosso in 2018, Red Bull's junior team. The senior squad has been heavily linked with Honda for 2019, with Marko admitting that all options are on the table.
"We are very happy with the Toro Rosso and Honda cooperation. Toro Rosso will put all its efforts into making a competitive chassis," Marko said. "We do believe in Honda, otherwise we wouldn’t have made that deal. I am very impressed with the facilities that they have and their determination to win.
“It is just a matter of bringing everything together and we believe that this moment will arrive sooner than everybody is expecting," he added. "We will observe very closely. Beyond 2018, everything is open."
2017 was not the ideal year for Red Bull, who hoped for a return to the front of the grid. Let down by Renault's power unit, Marko believes that if the French manufacturer makes improvements next year, Red Bull will bring a challenge to Mercedes.
"It should be better if we have a reliable power unit, and if we have more horsepower then we should come nearer to Mercedes, so it really could be the scenario that Wolff saw in his crystal ball. It will be an exciting season, that is for sure."
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing
Would you like to stay up to date with the latest Lewis Hamilton and Formula 1 news from GPtoday? Activate free push notifications and be the first to know!