Red Bull team principal Christian Horner is confident he will have more than one option for a future power unit supplier at the end of this season.
Following the moves that saw McLaren become a Renault customer and Toro Rosso take over as works partner with Honda, Renault then informed Red Bull that it does not intend on extending its contract to supply the team beyond the end of 2018.
While there are potential caveats to Renault’s stance due to concessions made when the French manufacturer returned to the sport as a constructor ahead of the 2016 season, Horner insists Red Bull will be able to choose between at least Renault and Honda for its future supply.
“I think the great thing for us is that we have options which is a situation we haven’t been in previously,” Horner told RACER. “We’ll take our time to evaluate those options and then try and make the best informed decision we can during the course of the coming year.”
Horner concedes he will be keeping a very close eye on how Toro Rosso is faring during the coming season to see how strong the Honda power unit looks to be in what will be its fourth season back in F1.
“Yes of course [Red Bull will follow Honda closely]. It’s a great deal for Toro Rosso. Honda have a great legacy in Formula 1, they have desire and ambition and as a sister team we’ll be keeping an interested eye on their progress during the first half of the year.”
While Red Bull’s deal with Renault ends after this season, Toro Rosso has already agreed to a three-year contract with Honda that will see it supplied by the Japanese manufacturer until the end of the current power unit regulations in 2020.