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Red Bull May Quit Formula One

Le Mans 24 Hours

To focus on a different racing series altogether.

Two of the top racing series are looking at big changes in their future. And when the dust settles, Red Bull could end up racing at Le Mans.

"Stop is the option. Or do something else, another racing series,” Red Bull's motorsport guru Dr Helmut Marko told Autosport regarding its future in Formula One. "With the Valkyrie, Le Mans could be an option with hypercar rules. We went through with it, and it's a sensational success. The cars were all sold out immediately. That's another good pillar for Red Bull Technologies."

Red Bull partnered with Aston Martin (which also sponsors the F1 team) on the development of the Valkyrie, a twelve-cylinder hybrid hypercar soon to enter production (however limited). Either the Valkyrie or an upcoming derivative positioned below are tipped to form the basis of the British automaker's assault on a new top class being developed for Le Mans and the broader FIA World Endurance Championship, more closely based on road-going hypercars than the outgoing LMP1 regulations. Given the energy-drink company's existing involvement in the Valkyrie program and its proven track record in motorsports, extending its partnership to endurance racing seems like a natural fit.

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The question is whether Red Bull would leave F1 on its way to Le Mans, or undertake both. And the answer may come down to how negotiations go with Liberty Media (F1's commercial rights holder) over the financial aspect of the series and its participating teams.

"If there was a cost cap in Formula 1, we would have to cut people," said Marko. "We don't necessarily want that. We could then use them in such projects [as Le Mans]. It still looks like you can run in the WEC at a reasonable cost with the base of our Valkyrie."

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