New Sauber boss Vasseur to deal with ‘Honda Question’ First

Frederic Vasseur has been asked to move Sauber further up the grid - Credit: Sauber Motorsport AG

Following the announcement that Frederic Vasseur will take over the role of Team Manager at the Sauber F1 Team after this weekend’s British Grand Prix, the Frenchman says his first job will be to decide what needs to be done with regards to Honda, who are set to be their new engine suppliers for 2018 and beyond.

Rumours have surfaced that the deal to bring in the Japanese engine supplier is possibly on the rocks, and Vasseur admits that seeing what has been going on with the McLaren F1 Team, with numerous mechanical issues and a far from competitive two and a half years so far since Honda returned to Formula 1.

Sauber owners are rumoured to be looking at possibly remaining with Ferrari into 2018, although a potential deal with Mercedes has also been suggested as a possibility, with the team looking to have the most competitive engine possible next season.

“The Honda question is on the table – it’s the first one I’m going to work on,” said Vasseur to French newspaper L’Equipe.

“We need to take care of this quickly. In light of what I hear from McLaren, it can be scary.”

Vasseur has revealed that team owners Longbow Finance have tasked him to get the team off the back of the grid, and he will be given the finances to do this.

“I’ve got the means to revamp the team and put it back in the points on a regular basis,” said Vasseur. “It’s exciting.

“Longbow is investing a large budget in the project. They’ve got a precise plan over several years. I have free rein to run this project. The team is motivated and has often proved its skills in the past.”