Ghosn: Renault will either exit or run our own team
Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn on Tuesday all but confirmed speculation the French carmaker is set to split with F1 partners Red Bull and Toro Rosso.
At the Frankfurt Motor Show, he admitted Renault is “renegotiating” its deals with the two energy drink-owned teams, amid intense speculation the decision to split has already been made.
“We will either exit or run our own team,” confirmed Ghosn, although he did not comment specifically on the talks with the Enstone based team Lotus. “We are assessing in detail and still having talks.”
Ghosn told media, “We are analysing what to do. We have been clear in saying ‘don’t count on us as a provider of engines’. It is clear that if you provide engines you aren’t mentioned when you win and you are criticised when you have problems.”
“Our future is the subject of detailed analysis and renegotiating. We will either exit or run our own team. We don’t have a clear decision yet,” he said.
Asked if high profile criticism of Renault by Red Bull was fair, Ghosn replied, “It is not a question of fair, it is a question of sportsmanship. A team should win and lose together. What has been said is a question of sportsmanship. Again I say, you should win and lose together.”
Renault’s decision on future F1 engine supply will impact the sport sport, with Mercedes, Ferrari and Honda the only confirmed engine suppliers for the foreseeable future.
Renault have an illustrious history in F1, having pioneered the entry of turbo engine technology in the seventies, and have since powered a number of drivers to world championship titles including the likes of Alain Prost, Nigel Mansell, Damon Hill, Jacques Villeneuve, Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso.
The partnership with Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel reaped four consecutive titles from 2010 to 2013, thereafter – with the advent of the new F1 turbo era – the relationship between the two organisations soured to the point of breakdown.