Motor racing-Red Bull, Honda extend F1 technical support deal until 2025
Red Bull have extended their power unit support agreement with Honda until the end of the 2025 season after the Japanese manufacturer's departure from Formula One, the team said in a statement on Tuesday. Honda withdrew from F1 at the end of 2021 after powering Max Verstappen to his maiden world championship, winning a drivers' title for the first time since the late Brazilian triple champion Ayrton Senna triumphed with McLaren in 1991.
The Austrian outfit set up their own powertrain company to use Honda's intellectual property to provide power units for their main Red Bull Racing Formula One team and Italy-based sister team AlphaTauri. The partnership was initially intended to last until the end of 2023, with Red Bull set to take over the operation, but will now run until the end of 2025, when the sport introduces the next generation of power units.
Red Bull are currently leading both Formula One championships by a comfortable margin, with Dutch driver Verstappen heading for a second straight world title. "We thank Honda for their positive response to working together. We are excited to continue our partnership in F1," Red Bull's team advisor Helmut Marko said.
"We have had a successful relationship so far, winning the drivers' championship in 2021 and currently leading the drivers' and teams' classifications, with the aim of securing both 2022 titles." Honda, which left as a constructor in 2008, announced last year its departure from F1 as an engine manufacturer at the end of 2021 to focus on zero-emission technology.
Formula One teams and manufacturers have agreed to "freeze" power unit development from the start of 2022 until the end of 2025, when the engine regulations are set for a revamp.
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