Christian Horner says the decision to extend Red Bull Racing's engine partnership deal with Renault was a logical one to make, despite high-profile ructions in 2015 that very nearly brought its relationship to an abrupt end.
Though the two parties have succeeded in winning four world titles together, Renault's continued struggles to get a grasp on the V6 Hybrid regulations in 2015 would prompt Red Bull to seek a way out of its contract by actively courting alternative deals with Mercedes, Ferrari and reportedly even Honda.
With Red Bull eventually relenting on retaining Renault power for 2016, the team has gone on to enjoy an upturn in fortunes spurred on by gains in the engine department, prompting the team to agree a new deal early that will see it remain within the French fold until the end of 2018.
Indeed, despite the public fall-out last year, which occasionally descended into a war of words, between Red Bull and Renault, Horner says the manufacturer's restructure and its improvements this year show a vindication for the decision to commit.
“It was a fairly straightforward discussion to extend the agreement for a further two years. I think, with the restructuring within Renault and the commitment that they've made, the investment that they're making, it was a fairly logical and straightforward discussion.”
With the sister Toro Rosso team returning to Renault power as well in 2017 – having settled for a year-old Ferrari power unit amidst the negotiation wrangles last year -, Red Bull has hinted it will continue with its policy of re-branding its engine having labelled it as TAG-Heuer this year.
“I think that it is a competitive price that we're paying and, obviously, we have the ability for that engine to be branded as something else and of course, Toro Rosso taking the same power unit creates further synergies there as well.”