Renault has been visiting a number of smaller team in order to decide to return as a fully branded Formula 1 works team.
It is understood that the French manufacturer has visited a number of smaller teams and now is debating which is best for the brand. Meanwhile Red Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko told reporters in Melbourne: “We might sell STR, but we do not have to.”
Meanwhile team principal Franz Tost has told Autosport that the team would be open to becoming a works outfit. “It would be a next step for us,” he said. “It would be good for Toro Rosso to be together with a manufacturer. For me it would be positive and for the team it would be positive.”
But, Tost only comment was “we are visiting Toro Rosso on a regular basis because they are a customer team.”
Focus shifting – Ferrari
Ferrari has shifted its focus on chasing down world champions Mercedes rather than defending against Williams and Red Bull after a strong start to their season.
The team finished third in Sunday’s season opener in Melbourne which was a impressive turnaround from last season when it finished behind Red Bull and Williams in fourth. Team boss Maurizio Arrivabene said in Melbourne “Our first target was to look at Williams and Red Bull. Now we need to start to be a bit more convinced about ourselves and to reduce the gap with the Mercedes guys.”
The team had good pre-season testing following sweeping management changes last season in which president Luca di Montezemolo and team boss Marco Mattiacci departed.
Giedo van der Garde says his dream of driving in Formula 1 has been “taken away” after agreeing to cancel his contract with Sauber. The dutch driver confirmed this in a statement.
Van der Garde dropped his unfair dismissal case last week allowing Sauber to race at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix with drivers Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr.
“I had a valid driver contract for the entire 2015 season and enforceable rights to it,” the former Sauber test driver added. The team responded by publishing a letter on Facebook “while we had actually hoped to come to rest after our agreement. Giedo decided to take a different approach – the reasoning behind we cannot understand.”
“We’d have very good answers to the many statements and accusations in Giedo’s post. But to expand on this wouldn’t help our race team nor our fans and partners.”
Manor to pay debt
Documents obtained by Sky Sports say that Manor will pay off all outstanding payments to creditors after exiting administration last month.
The team exited administration via a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) in February and returned to the F1 paddock in Melbourne. According to the documents unsecured creditors would have been paid 1.110p in the pound had the team’s assets been auctioned off.
When the team collapse in November Ferrari were owed £16m and McLaren £7m from engine and technical partnership deals.