Red Bull to pick 'optimal' circuit for engine penalties but Spa unlikely

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Red Bull is assessing which circuit would be "optimal" to take anticipated engine penalties.

The team is looking to bounce back after scoring just five points in the two races before the summer break, largely as a result of collisions with a Mercedes.

As a result, Red Bull's once comfortable lead in both championships has also become small deficits to their rivals, and team boss Christian Horner is eager to get going again at Spa-Francorchamps.

“We’ve had some hugely bad luck in the last couple of races,” he said.

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“It’s been pretty brutal in parts, in damage, in engines. But you know, we’ll brush ourselves down and we’ll come out fighting in the second half of the championship.

“Obviously it’s been a tough couple of weekends but things can turn around very quickly as you’ve seen, and there’s a long way to go.”

The impact of the collisions at Silverstone and Hungaroring is still being felt, with both Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez expected to take a grid drop for exceeding their power unit allocation.

“Very little I’m afraid," Horner said on the chances of that being avoided, "and that’s hugely frustrating for Honda because it’s not due to reliability, it’s because of accidents that we haven’t caused.

“They’re feeling the brunt of this as well, as we are on the chassis side, and it’s not to be underestimated."

Both Verstappen's Silverstone engine and Perez's Hungary unit were sent back to Honda's base in Sakura for inspection to see if they can be used again.

"As it looks now, the engines can no longer be used," Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko told Motorsport Magazin.

"In terms of the kilometres we still have to travel [this season], that means we probably have to use a fourth engine.

"Spa is not yet an option for taking the grid penalty for Verstappen because first, we want to wait and see if there are any possibilities with the engine.

"We have to look at what the optimal circuit is to be able to catch up and where we can pay the penalty."