McLaren, Honda confirm F1 divorce, coupling with new partners

McLaren announced Renault partnership today, Honda with Toro Rosso

The news broke recently that McLaren F1 and its engine partner Honda would split ways after the 2017 season. Neither party commented the news initially, but there is now a confirmation from both sides. In addition, McLaren confirmed today that they will be using Renault engines for the next three F1 seasons. This will be the first time that a McLaren Renault F1 car will compete.

McLaren's Executive Chairman Shaikh Mohammed bin Essa Al Khalifa praised Honda in his statement, while acknowledging that the 2015-2017 joint venture hasn't been successful enough:

"Although our partnership has not produced the desired success, that does not diminish the great history our two companies have enjoyed together, nor our continued efforts to achieve success in Formula 1. At this point in time, it is in the best interests of both companies that we pursue our racing ambitions separately."

Zak Brown, McLaren's Executive Director echoed that statement, adding that "It is certainly not for the want of effort on the part of either Honda or McLaren," and that the company hopes to see Honda get back to the top. At the moment McLaren has achieved 11 points and ninth place in the standings, with Honda power. Regarding Renault, Brown said, "Today's announcement gives us the stability we need to move ahead with our chassis and technical program for 2018 without any further hesitation."

As for Honda, they announced today that an agreement was reached on providing engines for Scuderia Toro Rosso for the 2018 season. As Honda's president Takahiro Hachigo said, "Toro Rosso is an experienced team with a youthful energy and history of nurturing the stars of the future. Everyone at Honda is looking forward to working with Toro Rosso."

About McLaren, Hachigo said, "Honda will continue the fight together with McLaren all the way to the end of the 2017 season, and then continue its F1 racing activities in 2018 and beyond."

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