Honda leaves Formula 1 with a world title in its pocket. from Honda. CEO Masashi Yamamoto is disappointed with the decision and hopes that Honda will return to Formula 1 in the future.
After an exciting year, in which the utmost was given to lead Max Verstappen to the world title, Honda is officially pulling the plug on the F1 project. However, this does not mean that the Japanese no longer have anything to do with partners Red Bull and AlphaTauri. First of all, the engines for 2022 are still being prepared for the fuel changes. In addition, a large part of the staff will also transfer to the new Red Bull Powertrains, which will provide the engines for both mother and daughter teams in the coming years.
It is not yet known whether Yamamoto will also make this switch. For the time being, the Honda exit means goodbye to Formula 1 for the CEO, who hopes that Honda will return in the future. “Personally, I am very sorry that we have to leave this sport. I think we pulled the plug on the project too early,” Yamamoto told Motorsport.com. “Personally, I expect Honda to be involved in Formula 1 again in the future, because racing at the highest level is in our DNA.”
‘Hopefully the next generation can persuade management’
The Japanese engine manufacturer’s F1 exit did not come from the motorsport branch, Yamamoto emphasizes. “All the employees involved in Formula 1 were eager to stay, but the management has decided to work towards C02 neutral cars and apparently this sport does not fit.” Nevertheless, the current price does not have to be decisive for the further future. “Hopefully the next generation with a passion for motorsport can convince management to come back.”
“Hopefully someone will pick up the baton”
Yamamoto’s right-hand man, Toyaharu Tanabe, is also disappointed with the decision. “I have no further influence on what the top of the company decides in the long term, but training engineers in motorsport is certainly part of Honda. We have always done that in the past and hopefully we will try again in the future.” Honda has not only been of value to the customer teams. The group itself has also benefited enormously from the drive to innovate and the incentive to think about the future. “Formula 1 is a kind of laboratory where the most new things are tried. That is very valuable for our brand’, emphasizes Tanabe.