Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has praised his team for how they have gone about preparing to become a ‘factory’ team in their own right from 2026, even though it’s “nerve-wracking and exciting all at once.”
American automotive giants Ford have entered into a partnership with Red Bull over their 2026 power units, which will be manufactured at the team’s Milton Keynes base in time for the sport’s huge power unit overhaul that year.
Red Bull currently run under the engine moniker of Red Bull Powertrains, though they use existing intellectual property from their previous partnership with Honda – with the Japanese marque still working with the team until they switch to Aston Martin in 2026.
Christian Horner: Red Bull ‘attacking’ 2026 engine programme
Red Bull have enjoyed two record-breaking seasons at the front of Formula 1 since the introduction of ground effect aerodynamics, and the stability in the regulations makes them favourites to potentially continue that moving forward – though Horner believes the field will converge in time.
With the power unit being the only part that is brought in from outside the Red Bull stable, the team are all systems go on producing their first engines come 2026.
The team principal and CEO admitted there is a huge challenge in front of them for their in-house power unit to be ready and competitive in just over two years, but he lauded how the team is going about it so far.
“That’s life, isn’t it? You know, nothing lasts forever, you’ve just got to keep evolving,” Horner said when asked if the team’s superlative run of form leaves him with any ‘trepidation’ about the 2026 regulations.
“At the moment, we don’t want this season to stop. ‘26 is the next chapter for us, and it’s taking control of the one bit of variable that we’ve had.
“I don’t think people perhaps comprehend the scale of the challenge that we’ve taken on for ’26, but the way the team is attacking it is exactly the same way that we have with a chassis.
“We’ve got two years, which seems like a long way away, but we’ve pretty much got 100 weeks now to when we’re rolling down the pit lane with a Red Bull designed and manufactured engine in the back of the car.
“So that’s nerve-wracking and exciting all at once, but we’re on a good trajectory.
“We’ve got some great people involved, we’ve got a great culture and we’re looking forward to it.”