Honda: Red Bull results 'encourage us' to stay in F1 post-2020

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Honda Formula 1 chief Masashi Yamamoto is increasingly hopeful that Red Bull results will "encourage" the company to stay post-2020.

The Japanese engine supplier has enjoyed much greater success since teaming up with the Milton Keynes-based outfit at the start of the year, scoring two wins and a pole position through Max Verstappen.

"There is not much we could do more than this," Yamamoto was quoted by GPFans.com.

"We didn't say we want to win five races but we want to exceed the points Red Bull scored last year and maybe five wins is possible."

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But as F1 continues to negotiate a new Concorde Agreement and rules overhaul for 2021, Honda is yet to say definitively if they plan to remain on the grid beyond next season.

"I think it's going to encourage us for continuation," Yamamoto said. "Honda and generally in society [in Japan] are in a very good mood that Honda has won. I think it's going to be very good for us.

"It's very difficult to clarify at this moment about the timing. It's true we're discussing it within the company, but we can't really say when we can announce it, at the moment."

As for this season, a more urgent decision relates to the introduction of Honda's latest engine upgrade after the summer break.

It has been suggested for some time that Monza is the target race when the pain of grid penalties will be taken to give Red Bull the best chance at the following event in Singapore.

However, Honda wants to balance that by also being in a strong position at their home race at Suzuka in October.

“We are discussing all the time with the teams and we will decide when we apply a new engine or updated spec,” technical chief Toyoharu Tanabe stated.

“At the moment no decision has been made yet. It depends on the situation and timing and the result of the discussions with the teams. It’s very complicated.”

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