Advantage Max Verstappen? Honda Set to Bring Major Engine Upgrade This Year For Red Bull Racing

Published 02/15/2021, 7:12 PM EST
MONTMELO, SPAIN: Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing walks in the Paddock during previews ahead of the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Catalunya in Montmelo, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)


Max Verstappen has long been touted as world championship-winning material. The Dutchman burst onto the F1 scene as a prodigy and has quickly established himself as one of the best drivers on the grid. Until now, the Red Bull ace hasn’t had the package to go up against the likes of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes to challenge for the title.

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But there seems to be good news in store not just for him, but also for the team and its fans.

Red Bull recently confirmed that they had acquired the necessary IP rights from Honda to begin making their own engines from 2022 onwards. This deal came about as a result of Honda’s decision to quit the sport post-2021, and F1’s subsequent decision to freeze engine development until 2025.

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However, despite taking the engine matters into their own hands for 2022, team boss Christian Horner revealed that Honda would give them a little parting gift.

SAO PAULO, BRAZIL: Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing celebrates finishing in third position in parc ferme during the Formula One Grand Prix of Brazil at Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

He said (translated by Google), “Updates that they would actually bring next year are already being done this year and that is really fantastic work from Honda.”

Could the early engine upgrades finally provide Verstappen the chance to win his maiden crown? We find out soon when the season kicks-off in Bahrain on March 28.

However, that’s not the only thing Honda intends to help Red Bull with.

Honda set to continue engine development to integrate new fuel for Red Bull

Horner said, “Honda will continue to develop the engine when it comes to fuel. Honda will hand over the engine to us when the engine freeze starts.

“They will be working on the engine anyway until December 31st and are also working with ExxonMobil on the development of the E10 fuel, which is an important part of the new regulations for next year.”

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SPIELBERG, AUSTRIA: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (33) Red Bull Racing RB12 TAG Heuer leads Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain driving the (44) Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team Mercedes F1 WO7 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo on track during the Formula One Grand Prix of Austria at in Spielberg. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

The Milton Keynes-based team certainly sits well poised on the engine front for the next few years at least. The fact that rivals Mercedes have expressed concerns over their own engine for the upcoming season, should sweeten this bit of news for Red Bull and its fans.

Will 2021 be the year Verstappen brings glory to himself and to Red Bull? Let us know below if you feel the Silver Arrows’ dominion will end this year.

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Ronan Carvalho

1063 articles

Ronan Carvalho is senior F1 author for Essentiallysports. Ronan is currently pursuing his Journalism degree from St. Xavier's College.

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