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STR confirms Renault preference

5 February 2013

Scuderia Toro Rosso is eyeing a switch to Renault power when the new F1 engine regulations take effect next season, according to team boss Franz Tost.

The Italian outfit is currently powered by Ferrari's V8 but, with the move to turbocharged V6 units on the slate for 2014, it is hoping to fall into line with the sister Red Bull Racing operation and run Renault's take on the new era powerplant. While not yet confirmed, the switch would undoubtedly make it easier for the two Dietrich Mateschitz-owned teams to work together on common parts, thereby cutting the cost of competition.

“It has not been decided yet,” Tost told F1 journalist Adam Cooper, “We are in negotiation with Renault, and then we will see. No contract is signed so far.

“We need to know as soon as possible, because as you know the earlier [you sign] with partners the easier it is to go into detail and sort out all the open questions, because next year's drivetrain package is very complicated. This complete package has to become one unit, and you need to know as soon as possible who your partners are.”

Any deal between Toro Rosso and Renault may have knock-on effects elsewhere on the grid, with the switch potentially freeing up capacity at Ferrari which can be used to supply Force India. The Silverstone team has been linked to a move from Mercedes power to Maranello, and any agreement between the two parties could see Ferrari academy driver Jules Bianchi installed in the vacant seat alongside Paul di Resta this season.


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