Red Bull to switch to Ferrari?


Red Bull and sister team Toro Rosso could be powered by Ferrari from 2016, according to a report in the German press.

The two Red bull-backed outfits are currently partnered with French manufacturer Renault, but the relationship that brought four consecutive Drivers' and Constructors' Championships has fractured of late due to Renault's failure to produce and engine that's able to challenge for victories.

Red Bull have endured a highly frustrating 2015 season in which they have collected just 54 points from seven races and have failed to secure a podium finish.

As a result, there has been much speculation that Red Bull will look to leave F1 if Renault are unable to make them competitive, while a mooted partnership with Audi has been quashed.

According to German publication Sport Bild, a possible solution to the Milton Keynes-based team's struggles is a link up with Ferrari in 2016, even though their deal with Renault runs through next season.

While a Red Bull-Ferrari partnership may seem a strange one, the Italian manufacturer has already had a spell as Red Bull supplier, having powered Red Bull in 2006, while Toro Rosso switched to Ferrari the following year.

However, a competitive engine will come at a cost for Red Bull. According to the reports, Ferrari are open to joining forces with Red Bull, but the Bulls would have definite 'B' team status and would have a specification of engine 20-30 horsepower behind that of the works Ferrari team.

While this situation would not be ideal, Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko believes that it's a better one to where they currently stand.

"Even a B version of the Ferrari would be better than the A version of the Renault," Marko told Sports Bild.

The reports come after Renault Sport F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul revealed that Renault would not rush into a decision about their F1 future, with a decision only to be made in the latter stages of the year.

"Red Bull wants the confidence we have the capacity to catch up, and on our side we need the certainty we can catch up," Abiteboul told Autosport.

"We also need to have confidence in the value of the sport and in the value of this partnership. This is something that is built over time. There is no rush."

He added: "I know this is the type of organisation that starts drawing early. I would imagine at some point later in 2015 they will want to know what is going on in 2017."