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F1 warned of consequences if customer parts are banned

As F1 heads to a new rules era from 2026, one idea that some outfits want is to clamp down on the kind of partnerships that exist between Red Bull/RB and Ferrari/Haas.

McLaren CEO Zak Brown in particular has been extremely vocal on the point, as he suggests F1’s regulations are “no longer fit for purpose” in allowing teams to work together, especially with common ownership.

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While it is understood that the future definition of a constructor is being evaluated as part of the 2026 discussions, RB team chiefs have warned about potential dangers.

They think that, despite a cost cap being in place, there remains a big divide between the top teams and those further down the order – which would only be exaggerated if everyone was forced to design and build all car parts themselves.

RB CEO Peter Bayer says that benefits his squad gets from its alliance with Red Bull are important to helping it fight in the midfield.

“There is certainly an advantage, which we believe is very important,” he said. “If you’re looking at the grid today, in last year’s world championship ranking, you add the points of the bottom four, they have less points than P6. If you add P6, less points altogether than P5.

“So I think Formula 1 as a sport needs to really consider what it wants. I think the fans and we all want to have close racing between 10 teams, not only two or three teams.

“To achieve that, I think you have to respect the financial reality, which today is still a fact that none of the teams are making money. And the further down the pecking order, the less money you make.”

Peter Bayer, CEO Racing Bulls, Laurent Mekies, Team Principal Racing Bulls

Peter Bayer, CEO Racing Bulls, Laurent Mekies, Team Principal Racing Bulls

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

RB team principal Laurent Mekies echoed Bayer’s comments in suggesting that changes to the customer parts rules in F1 would serve to make smaller teams less competitive.

“Why do we have these rules about part sharing? Two reasons. First, close grid. Peter’s example is quite striking,” he explained.

“Do we feel the grid is too close already? We don’t feel it. We feel the bottom four are quite a long way at the back and you will have only benefits to have them a bit closer.

“So, if anything, you would like to go in the other direction. But if we don’t want to do that in this sport, no problem. Certainly nothing indicates there that you should go for a more spread field for the benefit of the sport, certainly not.

“The second aspect is sustainability, and business model. Again, everybody’s putting money in the business and we are in a fantastic moment for Formula 1: fans at the top, audience at the top, everything, and it’s still an exercise that is difficult to make money with.

“So do you want change now on that very nice moment, disregarding what will happen in the next four, six years? That’s how we feel about it.”

He added: “We need to be careful not to misinterpret team-specific, short-term concerns into long-term, crucial objectives for the sport.”

Daniel Ricciardo, RB F1 Team VCARB 01 and Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB20

Daniel Ricciardo, RB F1 Team VCARB 01 and Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB20

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

Gardening leave complaints “incorrect”

Mekies also dismissed suggestions that RB was gaining an unfair advantage by having access to former Red Bull stuff without a period of gardening leave.

“It is incorrect to say that no gardening leave was applied to any personnel movement,” he said.

“The rules are clear: you cannot use personnel movement to get around the listed parts/IP [regulations]. How do you do that practically? We don’t decide ourselves [on the gardening leave]. We go to the FIA, cards on the table, and say we are going to hire that guy.

“The beauty of it is that I don’t need to go to the FIA if I hire a guy from Mercedes or Ferrari, but I have to do it when they come from Red Bull!

Laurent Mekies, Team Principal, RB F1 Team

Laurent Mekies, Team Principal, RB F1 Team

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

“So we agree [with the FIA] on what is a reasonable gardening leave for that guy, and that’s what we do. We self-impose, in agreement with the FIA and ourselves, between three and six months.

“The irony of it is that, as I said, we can get a guy from another team, if we agree with that team, in one day.

“And actually, the guys that are criticising us…sometimes it happens there, including a team principal, that they change from one day to another.

“But ironically we do not allow ourselves to do it with Red Bull. And we have the cards on the table with the FIA, so all of that [criticism] is plain incorrect.”

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This article was originally published by a www.motorsport.com . Read the Original article here. .

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