Christian Horner: “There needs to be change at Renault, because it can’t continue like this…”

Christian Horner has made clear his frustration at Renault by insisting that the French manufacturer has to change the way it does things.

His comments came after Sebastian Vettel’s Austrian GP was ruined by an early glitch that put him a lap down.

“It’s frustrating that we are in the situation we are,” said Horner. “We’ve had a lot of success with Renault, we’ve won all the races and all the championships we’ve achieved with Renault power. The situation just isn’t improving at the moment. Reliability is unacceptable, performance is unacceptable.

“There needs to be change at Renault, because it can’t continue like this. It’s not good for Renault, it’s not good for Red Bull. We need to work together as partners – there will not be another engine in the back of the car next year, we want to be competitive, we want to run at the front, and these kinds of issues can’t and shouldn’t happen.

“Something needs to happen, because whatever’s being done there is not working at the moment. It’s not our business, it’s not our responsibility, we’re the end user. It’s just frustrating that the product is just not working at the moment.

“It’s no surprise that there are eight Mercedes cars in the top 10. We haven’t been competitive this weekend, eighth was the optimum that we could achieve, and it’s frustrating that we’re nearing the half way point in the season and the situation hasn’t really improved from Melbourne.”

Asked about suggestions from Helmut Marko that Red Bull could pursue its own engine project he said: “It’s highly improbable. First of all we need to see what the plans of Renault are. Obviously a team like Red Bull isn’t short of choices, but we want to make sure that we’re competitive for the long term. Obviously designing and manufacturing our own engine currently isn’t part of our plan.

“We’re specialists in building chassis. We have no desire to be an engine manufacturer, we want to work with a strong, competitive partner.”

Meanwhile Horner confirmed that Vettel retired from the race in order to preserve his equipment for future use.

“On the first lap by the time he got up to Turn 2, the engine lost all drive. It looks like an electrical issue, there was no throttle response whatsoever. Obviously he lost a lap while there were plenty of re-sets going on and we were trying to establish what the issue was. The engine came back into life, he got going, at which point he was a lap and a half down. We kept going and then after some front wing damage with Gutierrez, following that it didn’t really make sense to go any further.”


Filed under F1 News, Grand Prix News

5 responses to “Christian Horner: “There needs to be change at Renault, because it can’t continue like this…”

  1. David Myers

    Red Bull have spent a lot of time bitching about Renault over the last few years, but none of the other Renault teams have the same number of problems. That implies the problems are related to their packaging rather than the equipment itself…

    • petes

      Memories failing me, this early into the new formula….’none of the other’ etc. Must have missed something.
      Are there any other Renault powered teams competing? I mean really competing, not just hoping for an end of season hand-out?
      Lotus isn’t, neither is Caterham.

    • **Paul**

      I agree with Petes. Look at Lotus, they’ve had massive problems with, primarily, the power unit. Even Torro Rosso who have done ok still have issues with it.

      The failure rate of Renault engines is largely what contributed to Webbers numerous retirements, be it KERS failing, the car bursting into flames (yeah it did that a few times) and alternator failures. What did the fans do ? They blamed Red Bull.

      Whilst I don’t think the Renault & Red Bull linkup is over, I do think it’s seriously strained, especially given how little resource Renault put into it’s PU compared to Ferrari and the massive gulf in resource between it and the Merc PU. You can’t be competitive in an engine formula with the worst power unit in F1. They can have the best aero package and the love child of Senna, Fangio and Schumacher in the hot seat – it makes no difference when the power unit dominates pretty much everything in F1 2014.

  2. Stone the Crows

    If I believed in Karma I would say that Vettel is discovering what it was like to Webber all those years. Reliability is something that Renault can do something about, other performance upgrades are probably out of the question for this season. RBR is in a hole they cannot get out of this year; they came late to testing, due in part to Renault, and the problems that should have been sorted out there were not, and so they began ill prepared to start the season and this has been catching them out.

  3. Renault reliability as a whole has been crap for yeeeeeears! Nissan’s reliability, (after partnering with them) continues to decline. In the US, Renault cars and their Chrysler counterparts proved to have disastrous reliability. You really have to be complete buffoon to keep falling for this company’s joke cars. I mean really, a company produces nothing but junk and there’s always some idiot lined up to buy one. When will they learn? Horrible reliability and horrible resale value.

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