According to Red Bull motorsport advisor Dr Helmut Marko, Honda is not yet committed to Formula 1 beyond 2020.
He is of the opinion that Honda still have work to do to catch Ferrari and Mercedes in the future. All this was in spite of the fact that ExxonMobil introduced a new fuel for the Japanese carmaker’s ‘spec 4’ engine at Suzuka.
“In qualifying we are still clearly behind, especially Ferrari,” he revealed to Auto Motor und Sport. “We lost eight tenths to them on the straights. But in the race we are about equal to Mercedes.”
Speaking about Honda’s Formula One future, the former driver confessed that everything is still up in the air.
“They are waiting until the new regulations are on the table. Then they will analyse everything and decide.”
The Red Bull man also divulged that reducing costs for the engine manufacturers will be “very important”. According to him, If the cost do not get cheaper, a number of teams may be forced to leave.
However, on a similar vein, he believes that it would be a bad idea to ‘freeze’ engine development at the moment.
“Freezing only works when everybody is at the same level,” said Marko. “At the moment, Ferrari drives away from everyone in qualifying, including Mercedes.”
Speaking about Albon’s impressive performance, team principal Christian Horner said, “He’s certainly making a really good play for it. It’s his seat to lose in many respects and I think everything he’s done so far he’s done a super job.”
“We’ve still got plenty of time. All the drivers are under contract, we don’t need to rush, but I’m very pleased with what he’s done so far,”
“He drove a good race. He had a bad start, but then recovered well and passed Lando [Norris], caught Carlos [Sainz] and passed him on the lap that Carlos pitted on, and then he made the two-stop strategy work.”