F1 risks becoming Mercedes/Ferrari ‘Lockdown’ – Newey

Red Bull Racing’s Chief Technical Officer Adrian Newey believes Formula 1 risks turning into a sport where only Mercedes AMG PETRONAS and Scuderia Ferrari are able to win races, unless it embraces the idea of an independent engine.

Newey believes the sport should go down the route of including independent engines allowing private teams the opportunity to have a competitive engine for a much more reasonable cost, believing customer teams of Mercedes and Ferrari engines should be equal to the works teams.

“The Cosworth DFV was the best example of that. The cost will be much more reasonable, but I think it is just as important that there is the availability of a competitive power unit” said Newey to Motorsport.com. “At the moment, the customer teams of Mercedes and Ferrari are not offered the same specification as the works teams.

“So we are actually in the situation where only a works Mercedes or possibly a works Ferrari can win races or championships, which to me isn’t what F1 should be.”

With the potential introduction of an independent engine, Newey believes the difficulties of achieving a performance balance with the current V6 turbos could spice up Formula 1.

“The whole idea of an independent power unit is it allows small teams to have a fully competitive power unit,” he said. “Producing a power unit which if it’s not constrained by the regulations, which is fully competitive, is very easy.

“So it is then trying to get the balance of power right between the independent engines and the works engine. I think what could be exciting about that is the characteristics will be different with the independent engines. That means at some races the independent engine could have an advantage.

“At other races it will be at a disadvantage, but from a general public interest point of view, to me that evens out what you want because it means you get different winners at different races. It is unpredictable.”