- Sep 18, 2008
No Fair! F1 teams lobby for engine parity
You'd think that the teams in Formula One would all be striving to eek out every little performance advantage they can, right? Well, not quite. It turns out that some of the teams are lobbying behind closed doors to equalize engine performance across the series.
The development has been prompted by Sebastian Vettel's landmark domination at this past weekend's Italian Grand Prix. The young German drives for Scuderia Toro Rosso, which essentially – and controversially – runs the same cars as the senior Red Bull Racing team, only with one major difference: the engine. While RBR uses Renault engines, STR is powered by Ferrari. And according to Red Bull chief Christian Horner, the performance advantage which Ferrari has cultivated over Renault is what allowed Vettel to beat out the Renault-powered Red Bull cars, to say nothing of the rest of the field. Horner insists that Renault has obeyed the engine development freeze currently in place, while Ferrari, BMW and McLaren partner Mercedes-Benz have taken advantage of loopholes that has allowed them to find as much as 30 extra horsepower. "We don't need an engine formula to completely open up," said Horner, "but there should be a parity as much as possible among the engine suppliers – otherwise we will all end up with one engine at the end of the day."