While Honda has announced its withdrawal from Formula 1, the Japanese brand will not give up motorsport entirely. Honda continues to work in the Moto GP already, but will continue to support Red Bull Racing in designing and tuning the first engines for the “Red Bull Powertrains” division.
Honda will continue to work with Red Bull Underwater. Honda and Red Bull have announced that their motorsport collaboration will extend beyond Formula 1. In addition, although the Japanese automaker completed the Formula 1 engine development project at the end of the season, Honda will continue to support the development of the new Red Bull engines throughout the year. 2022. Red Bull Powertrains will apply the right to use Honda’s intellectual property from 2022 to design. However, to ensure a smooth transition, Honda will support Red Bull in building its own engines and will continue to provide racing operations support throughout the 2022 season for Red Bull Racing and Scuderia Alfa Torri.
Technical support will end in 2023, but some employees of Honda’s F1 program in the UK will join Red Bull Powertrains after that. From now on, all engine manufacturing and maintenance will be the sole responsibility of the energy drink company. However, Honda said it wants to continue promoting motorsport in Japan, with the ultimate goal of attracting more Japanese drivers to top-level racing. To facilitate this, the two companies will expand their cooperation to include various forms of motorsports and other sports and marketing activities.
There is no real start for F1
The announcements were not entirely unexpected, Honda-backed Yuki Tsunoda was already assured of retaining his seat with the Alpha Tauri for 2022, despite results less impressive than those of his teammate, Pierre Gasly. “I am happy that we have reached an agreement with Red Bull Group that covers all the details of the intellectual property rights for the Formula One engine, and in this way Honda can always contribute to the world of motorsports.”Honda chief Koji Watanabe said.
Christine Horner, Red Bull Team Principal, is delighted that the partnership has entered a new phase: “Red Bull’s collaboration with Honda has been a huge success, and although our relationship in Formula 1 is changing, none of us want that to be the end of the story (…) Technically and operationally in 2022, this will help ensure Red Bull’s transition to engine manufacturer status goes smoothly.”, continued.
Motorsports, always a priority
While it remains unclear whether the Honda brand will remain in the Red Bull Racing and Alpha Tauri cars beyond the 2021 season, it has also been announced that all motorsports related activities will now be known as HRC (Honda Racing Corporation) . HRC has successfully managed Honda’s Moto GP division for many years. This decision will enhance the activities and brand image of the Japanese company in the field of motorsport, integrating all the technologies and experience gained in F1 and Moto GP.
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