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Is Red Bull secretly bidding for Alonso and Ferrari engines?

Red Bull Racing, the famous Formula One team, has been experiencing uncompetitive and disappointing seasons since 2013. During this season, “the Austrian squad” obtained no victories, no pole positions and some podiums such as the one in Hungary. Mainly, these poor results are a consequence of the uncompetitive Renault engines. Furthermore, after the transfer of Vettel to Ferrari, the absence of an excellent driver has concretely reduced the competitiveness of the same Red Bull.

Obviously, this team is seriously considering some fascinating and hazardous investments for the future to fight again for the World Championship. A first choice may be a secret bid for Fernando Alonso, the Spanish champion who actually drives for the very awful and slow McLaren. Alonso is concretely losing his motivation during this season, because McLaren is one of the least competitive teams on the grid. According to grandprix.com “Alonso was spotted coming out of the Red Bull motor home at a recent race, and now the Italian insider Leo Turrini says he has heard a whisper from within the 34-year-old’s own camp that a Ferrari-powered car might tempt him next year”(1).

There are other factors which underline the existence of this possibility. It seems that his contract for McLaren may include a secret clause. This clause should allow Fernando to move elsewhere in 2016, in case of lack of competitiveness by the same McLaren. Always according to grandprix.com “McLaren supremo Ron Dennis has insisted the Spaniard is on a fixed contract for 2015, 2016 and 2017 without exit clauses, but Italian and Spanish media sources this weekend have insisted those clauses do exist”(2).

This driver may also leave his current team due to financial and economical problems. In fact, it’s evident that McLaren is losing sponsorships and fundings because of its disastrous results. Consequently, it may not have the sufficient budget to cover his full pay-scale for the next season. At the moment, Alonso is one of the most paid drivers in Formula 1. In fact, according to Total Sportek he has an “annual salary of $40 million (£25.5m) a year”(3).

Red Bull is planning to recover its competitiveness thanks to other courageous and brave choices. After the breakdown of negotiations with Mercedes, its team principal Chris Horner is going to consider the Ferrari engines for the next season. According to GPUpdate.net Mr. Horner said “It’s probably a Ferrari or nothing; It really is as simple as that; It’s a Ferrari engine or… at the moment Mercedes won’t supply, and there’s no other option”(4). Furthermore, Red Bull has already interrupted its deal with Renault for 2016 and shouldn’t have any problem in changing its engine supplier.

Lastly, Maurizio Arrivabene, the Ferrari team boss released some positive statements about Red Bull. In fact, according to Sky Sports he said “Red Bull have big names, with Adrian Newey as chief designer, and it is easy to think if you give them the engine they will build a scary chassis, which means they will be really competitive; This doesn’t mean tomorrow morning we will give our engines to Red Bull but I don’t see any problem to give our engine to any other team or be scared of the competition before they start”(5).




2 Ibidem.