Will Cyril Abiteboul Accompany Red Bull for the 2022 F1 Season?

Published 01/18/2022, 2:17 PM EST
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – MAY 23: Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner and Renault Sport F1 Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul talk in the Team Principals Press Conference during practice for the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco on May 23, 2019 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Former Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul was spotted in the Red Bull garage for the Abu Dhabi GP. Additionally, rumors of the Frenchman making his F1 return with Red Bull took over the F1 community by storm. And while the idea of Abiteboul working with Christian Horner makes for a compelling story, it is, unfortunately, untrue.

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Abiteboul was linked to a role in Red Bull’s powertrains project. Especially after Honda’s time with Red Bull ends ahead of the 2022 season, Red Bull is left to themselves for their engine; a place where Abiteboul’s role would have proven helpful. With his experience with Renault as a constructor, the boss could have been significant to the team’s development.

Formula One F1 – Portuguese Grand Prix – Algarve International Circuit, Portimao, Portugal – October 23, 2020 Renault Sport F1 Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul wearing a face mask FIA/Handout via REUTERS

However, Red Bull denied any such information. An insider from the team saidThese rumors are completely unfounded.”

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While the origins of the idea remain unsure, RBR has made the outcome clear; Abiteboul will not be working with them. But what a  remarkable move that would be.

Cyril Abiteboul and Red Bull

Drive to Survive popularized the entertaining rapport shared by Abiteboul and Red Bull’s very own Christian Horner. The two weren’t the best of mates, often taking jabs at each other.

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Renault supplied engines to Milton Keynes for several seasons; soon, reliability became an issue. In 2018, the partnership ended, kindling a small flame between the two teams. To add to the growing flame was the fuel of Daniel Ricciardo‘s exit from Red Bull to Renault’s doorstep.

Further, Horner often called his rival names like Cyril Irritable and Squirrel Irritable. However, in Abu Dhabi, the flames seem to have been long extinguished between the two.

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Now, for 2022, Red Bull would be looking for a man with perception for their powertrains project, one that Abiteboul fairly possesses. The team has been looking at personnel from rival teams, yet, for now, the former Renault boss doesn’t seem to be on the list.

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Shreya Sanjeev

781 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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