Helmut Marko has confirmed McLaren chairman Ron Dennis did exercise a veto against the prospect of a deal between Red Bull Racing and engine supplier Honda, adding the Japanese firm will make a big step forward in 2016.
Following rejections from both Mercedes and Ferrari, Red Bull entered discussions with Honda last month about the possibility of securing an engine supply for the 2016 season, a deal it felt could be mutually beneficial as the Japanese firm bids to bring its power unit up to speed.
However, with McLaren having repeatedly described its relationship with Honda as exclusive, it was considered the team had stepped in to prevent the deal from going ahead, with Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko confirming it was Dennis that exercised a veto.
“We had discussions with people from Honda,” he told the F1 website. “They were willing to supply us with engines, but said that Ron Dennis could veto this - and he used his veto.”
While any deal between Red Bull and Honda would have been considered a surprise given the team was ditching Renault power units over unsatisfactory performance and reliability, Marko says he was satisfied with the plans to improve the engine for 2016.
“Honda has made a big commitment financially and building wise,” he continued. “And from what I see they are learning from their mistakes, so I can imagine that we will see a completely different picture of Honda next year.”