Red Bull results to dictate Honda’s future

Date published: March 27 2019 - Editor

Red Bull's performances will play a big part in Honda's commitment to Formula 1 from 2020.

The level of success Red Bull experience will impact upon Honda’s commitment to Formula 1 after 2020 says Masashi Yamamoto.

Yamamoto took on the newly created role of Honda F1 managing director as the Japanese manufacturer look to step up their Formula 1 dedication.

Their two-year partnership with Red Bull got off to an impressive start, with Max Verstappen claiming P3 in Melbourne and Honda’s first podium since their return to the sport in 2015.

Honda, like most participants, needs to commit to a fresh Formula 1 deal beyond 2020, and Yamamoto believes Red Bull’s performances are key in convincing the Honda chiefs to stick around.

Speaking to Motorsport.com, he said: “This year will be very important for Honda to think about how we can commit after 2020 with Formula 1.

“We think we have to judge the overall situation.

“One [factor] is about the 2021 regulation, of course it’s going to be included. Also, the business and marketing around F1.

“The last thing is the result we can make with Red Bull. We cannot just decide from one thing.”

After three seasons with McLaren where Honda produced an engine which was consistently slow and unreliable, 2018 marked an improved campaign as they linked up with Red Bull’s junior team Toro Rosso.

That convinced Red Bull to take a chance, and now that they have the correct partner onboard, Yamamoto says the next step is proving to management that they can deliver wins.

“As Honda, when we participate in any category of motorsport, our aim is to win,” said Yamamoto.

“Before we started with Red Bull, I explained the details to the management how we’re going to reach that. Then we convinced the upper management.

“So now the company’s feeling, and the people here, has the same direction towards winning.”

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