Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner says the energy drinks company that owns the team remains totally committed to a long-term future in Formula, 1 and would not contemplate walking away from the sport even when its current dominance comes to an end.
F1 has a long history of manufacturers investing heavily in the sport to achieve success and then suddenly walking away when results are harder to get, or it no longer feels its funding is justified. However, Horner sees no circumstances under which Red Bull would turn its back on the sport, citing its lengthy spell in F1 as proof of its devotion to grand prix racing.
"Dietrich [Mateschitz, Red Bull founder] is passionate about the sport and, as a sponsor and a shareholder in another team, Sauber, Red Bull has been around F1 for over 15 years now. Our target is to build on the success into the future, and where you look in the standings, where Red Bull already sits, it is already quite an achievement. We are ahead of some illustrious names in a very short space of time."
Horner believes that the global scale of F1 provides the perfect platform for Red Bull's marketing strategy, something that could be bettered only by the Olympic Games.
"The global audience that F1 represents is a huge platform for Red Bull to market its product," he said. "It is impossible to correlate can sales with F1 visibility but, when you look at the amount of coverage that Red Bull and Red Bull partners have enjoyed, not just this year but the last three to four years, it is absolutely incredible.
"For sure, from a brand awareness point of view, F1 is probably only second only to the Olympic Games – which are every four years."
Horner said he sees no reason why Red Bull Racing cannot continue to improve on its current form, judging by the steps forward it is continuing to make.
"I think stability has been important. The team is still a young team and I think this year, the team has been stronger in all areas than any previous seasons," he said. "Operationally, we have been very strong. Strategically we have been very strong. Our development rate has been very good, we have had a very quick car, our design team reliability has been fantastic and I think that it is a combination of all those factors coming together from lessons learned over previous years that we have applied very well this year,
"Sometimes when we haven't had the quickest car on a Sunday, we have still managed to win with it, and that demonstrates the strength of a team that is in total harmony and working in unison. That is the level that we have achieved this year, and will be looking to build on in the future."