Volkswagen is closing in on a deal to purchase the Red Bull Formula One team to enter as a full works entry with VW power units in 2018, per BBC Sport. We’ve all been wondering why the Volkswagen Group keeps hiring personnel from Formula One, and I guess now we know.
BBC F1 pundit Eddie Jordan says that the Red Bull team will likely use Ferrari engines in the interim until Volkswagen can develop its own power unit. Red Bull, too, would remain as a major sponsor of the team.
Of the Volkswagen brands, Audi is still considered the one most likely to be on a F1 entry.
Red Bull will split with current power unit supplier Renault after this year after their miserable performance in 2015. This somewhat put the team into limbo, given that Red Bull has been the de facto works entry for Renault over the past few years.
According to BBC Sport, Volkswagen board chairman Martin Winterkorn has already agreed with team boss Dietrich Mateschitz and Red Bull motorsport adviser Helmut Marko to purchase the team. Former Volkswagen Group chairman Ferdinand Piech was against the idea of going into Formula One, however, he resigned in April.
Team principal Christian Horner has publicly denied that anything is going on between the two brands, however, in Formula One, denial is the number one sign of guilt.
Update: Will it be an Audi car? If so, Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich isn’t talking about it. I caught up with him here at Lone Star Le Mans, where he’s here to support the Audi World Endurance Championship effort.
“I have no information about what’s going on,” Ullrich said.
He continued, “We’ve been in F1 25 times if you believe the papers.”
True, true. Personally, I’m rooting for MAN F1. What better Volkswagen brand is there to run an F1 effort than the one that could sell tow rigs to all the other teams?
Photo credit: Getty Images
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