Mercedes Red Bull

Red Bull Racing has successfully dethroned Mercedes to become the ultimate champion of Formula One. Now, to further extend its dominance in the sport, the team recently announced its brand new partnership with Ford. The new partners will help them in manufacturing their homegrown combustion engine for the 2026 season, the same year when F1 is set to implement new engine regulations.

Meanwhile, the Austrian team has already begun testing out the 2026 proposed changes on the simulator and is not quite convinced. Recently, Red Bull chief Christian Horner and lead driver Max Verstappen called out the regulations and termed it not fit for racing. But, Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff, smells a conspiracy designed to hide the drink-based team’s shortcomings.


Toto Wolff Brushes Off 2026 Regulation Concerns, Accuses Christian Horner Of Manipulation

Toto Wolff
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War of words between Mercedes and Red Bull team principals is not a new affair. Every now and then, the duo are seen clashing with each other on a variety of issues. This time, the verbal fight arose due to the 2026 engine regulations assessment. Christian Horner said that Red Bull had tested the regulations on the simulator, and it has so far been terrible. As per current regulations, power units in F1 have a roughly 80-20 power split between the combustion engine and the electric component. But with new alterations in 2026, the electric component’s split will rise by three folds. Now, Horner feels that such an increase will not allow the drivers to prevent downshifting on straightaways. This, in turn, will have a negative impact on race aerodynamics.

However, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has refuted any such concerns. He said that even with the new engine regulations, a team with enough resources at deck can develop chassis and aerodynamics that prevent the drivers from downshifting in a straight line. Wolff claimed that these insignificant issues were a mere decoy to hide the team’s actual problem. He believes that Red Bull’s million-dollar engine program isn’t progressing as it should, which is scaring them from the core. Hence, Horner wants to manipulate F1 officials into changing this regulation for his own personal benefit. Mercedes’ boss also affirmed that the 2026 engine regulations will not change as the majority of the manufacturers are on board with it.

Max Verstappen Supports Red Bull Boss In Engine Regulation Debate

Red Bull
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Meanwhile, the driver who actually tested out the 2026 engine regulations on the simulator has issued his verdict. Max Verstappen’s assessments fall parallel to Christian Horner’s comments. He said that the simulation results were terrible and that it’s not the way F1 should be heading. These changes will immensely benefit the team with the strongest combustion engine, which will, in turn, give rise to an unhealthy power manufacturing war.

Max Verstappen also claimed that under these changes, the ECU would gain full control of the active aerodynamics. This will prevent the drivers from taking full control of the movements of their cars. As a driver to wants to have full control of his aerodynamics, Verstappen felt extremely uncomfortable driving the car on the simulator. F1 authorities are yet to comment on the issue. But it seems like the ongoing raging debate is not likely to end anytime soon.