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Horner: 'Ambitious' two month deadline to agree F1 future

Christian Horner (GBR) Red Bull Racing Team Principal.
© XPB 

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner says that Formula 1 needs to pursue an aggressive timetable on achieving agreement on the sport's future.

“It needs to be done within the next couple of months, but that’s ambitious,” Horner told Sky Sports F1 on Friday.

"There’s some big topics to deal with there," he admitted. "Engines, budget caps and redistribution of prize funds.

"It’s ambitious but they’ve got to go for it," Horner insisted. "At least they’ve put a target down to say we want this nailed within a couple of months."

Horner was speaking after Free Practice 1 for the Bahrain Grand Prix. Earlier in the day he and other team principals attended a meeting with Liberty Media about the new owners' proposals for the sport's future from 2021.

Horner said he was broadly supportive of what he'd heard about Liberty's plans. However, details haven't been publicly circulated and team bosses have been reluctant to talk about the meeting.

“[Liberty] are not keen to conduct all the negotiation through the media," he said. "[The press release] gives you the bare bones.

"But the bottom line is this is going to have a much bigger effect on three or four teams running at the front of the grid."

Red Bull title sponsors Aston Martin are rumoured to be considering a move into Formula 1 as a manufacturer - if the future plans look right. The carmaker's CEO Andy Palmer has given a positive response to this morning's talks.

"We are extremely pleased to hear today’s news regarding the future of Formula 1," Palmer posted on Twitter. "These prospective changes support many of the requirements needed for Aston Martin to enter the sport as an engine supplier.

"This is a very positive step in the right direction," he added.

Horner referred to Palmer's tweet when he spoke to Sky Sports. “You may have seen the CEO of Aston Martin’s tweet," he said.

"He’s fully supportive of what’s just been announced,” Horner continued. “There are manufacturers that are looking on the outskirts on Formula 1, wanting to come in.

"But the way that the regulations are currently written [makes] that it prohibitive," he added. "The drawbridge is up.

"It’s a question of getting the drawbridge down, getting the costs down and getting the spectacle right.”

If Aston Martin does enter Formula 1 as a manufacturer, Red Bull is hoping to be first in line for power units. The team is currently in the last year of its contract with Renault.

After four title-winning seasons together between 2010 and 2013, relations between Red Bull and Renault have been rocky iof late. But the team has little option when it comes to engines for 2019 other than a possible switch to Honda.

That decision will depend heavily on how Honda's new collaboration with Red Bull junior team Toro Rosso goes in the next couple of months..

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