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Christian Horner

Horner affirms Red Bull confidence after 'ballsy' 2026 F1 decision

Christian Horner believes the decision by Red Bull to take control of its own engine manufacturing for the 2026 season is "pretty ballsy" but feels it will "pay off" given the team's track record in F1.

Horner II
To news overview © XPBimages

Christian Horner has asserted that Red Bull bringing power unit production in house has been a "very bold" and "very brave" choice, but believes the change in approach will pay off.

With Honda joining forces with Aston Martin for the introduction of new engine regulations in 2026, Red Bull will become a power unit manufacturer. Red Bull Powertrains (RBPT) is entering a strategic partnership with American automotive giant Ford.

But to the size of the rule changes coming into force, some believe it will see a re-alignment in F1.

Honda has powered Red Bull to back-to-back constructors' titles and Max Verstappen to three consecutive drivers' championships, and are expected to dominate until the end of the 2025 season, but that run of success could come to an end the following year.

"So, 2026, we don't even have any chassis rules yet," Horner replied to media including RacingNews365 at the Chinese Grand Prix when asked what progress he is expecting with the new engine.

"But if I was going to back any team to get the chassis right, I think we've [Red Bull have] got a reasonable track record."

What we've done is 'pretty ballsy'

Turning his focus to the question at hand, Horner addressed Red Bull taking hold of its own power unit production.

That decision will see it go toe-to-toe with Ferrari, Mercedes, Renault (Alpine) and existing partner Honda - as well as Audi - when the 2026 rules come into force, meaning two more engine providers will be competing in F1 than the current four.

"And we've taken on a new project with the engine. We've got some exceptional people, we’ve got an incredible facility, and yeah, for sure, it's very bold, what we've done, and it's very brave and it's pretty ballsy," he stated.

"Red Bull wouldn't have won 117 races and done what we've done without making bold decisions, and we believe that it will pay off."

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