Renault have been taking a bit of a drubbing lately over their engine supply to Red Bull Racing and Toro Rosso. The company admits that they are not doing a good enough job of providing the teams with an engine that is competitive to Mercedes. It also suggests that they’d like to get more from their Formula 1 investment.
If you were an engine maker and your investment in Red Bull’s recent 4-year domination was mainly overshadowed by the Red Bull brand itself as well as Infiniti, you might start to consider your investment and whether or not there was a way to maximize your marketing dollar in F1.
To those ends, Renault seems interested in acquiring their own works team and Toro Rosso is of particular interest. Renault F1’s managing director Cyril Abiteboul said:
“We are considering expanding our marketing story.
“What we are looking into is improving our return on investment from F1.
“We will do that in the course of the year but it is not a short term future.
“It’s an important decision that should not be taken lightly. Anyway, that’s not for this year so we still have a bit of time.”
Are they serious? Well Toro Rosso seem to think the are as team boss Franz Tost said:
“It would be a next step for us,” he said. “It would be good for Toro Rosso to be together with a manufacturer.
“For me it would be positive and for the team it would be positive.”
It’s a logical option for Renault. We can speculate on how healthy the relationship is between the French engine maker and Red Bull Racing but the reality is the team used to have a works operation and won two title with it.
It would also seem that Lotus F1 or even Sauber might be an interesting acquisition for them too. Time will tell but look for Renault to get back in the race as a works team.
Hat Tip: AUTOSPORT