SEPTEMBER 22, 2015
Red Bull did not push for Mercedes power says Lauda
Red Bull did not push hard for a supply of Mercedes engines, the German team's chairman and F1 legend Niki Lauda says.
Obviously splitting with Renault, the energy drink-owned camp is now threatening to pull out of formula one because one alternative, Mercedes, is refusing to work with them and the other, Ferrari, is yet to sign on the dotted line.
But Lauda said the perception Mercedes was simply not willing to supply Red Bull is not quite true.
"I spoke once to Dietrich Mateschitz," the great Austrian told German television Sky. "I even went there myself.
"He said 'In principle, I would be interested' but there was nothing else. That was two or three months ago," revealed Lauda.
Instead, with Lotus set to switch from Mercedes to Renault, the German marque will fill up its customer roster for 2016 by inking a deal with Manor.
So Lauda said the matter of working with Red Bull is now a moot point, as Mercedes "has taken a fourth team and so we are full".
Meanwhile, amid rumours Mercedes could help Lotus transition to Renault next year by collaborating with the French carmaker in the hybrid area, Lauda said he "does not exclude" that eventuality.