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Saturday's Formula 1 news roundup

Here, Sports Mole rounds up the latest Formula 1 news on Saturday, November 28.

Sports Mole rounds up all of the latest news regarding Formula 1 on Saturday, November 28.

Saturday morning's Formula 1 news roundup


Hulkenberg 'hot' for chance at 2021 Red Bull seat

Nico Hulkenberg pictured on August 6, 2020© Reuters

Nico Hulkenberg has admitted he is "extremely hot" at the prospect of landing a plum Red Bull seat for his full-time return to Formula 1 in 2021.

The German lost his Renault seat at the end of 2019, but emerged as the 'super-sub' at Racing Point this year when Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll missed races.

"My missions were very short and very concentrated, but I like crazy challenges," he told Sport1. "I'm grateful that I got the chance because otherwise my name would certainly have been said a lot less than it is now."

Indeed, the 33-year-old is Max Verstappen's preferred pick to replace endangered Red Bull driver Alex Albon for 2021. The British-born Thai driver did himself no favours in Bahrain on Friday with a heavy crash.

Hulkenberg says he is surprised to be a favourite for the seat along with Sergio Perez.

"No, I couldn't have expected that," he admitted. "So I'm all the more grateful that it went the way it did to get to this moment."

When asked what securing the Red Bull seat would mean to him, Hulkenberg compared it to several years ago when he was rumoured to be close to signing for Ferrari.

"To get another opportunity like this in the autumn of my career - I'm extremely hot for it. And more generally I also feel how much I miss the competition."

As for Verstappen naming him as his preferred 2021 teammate, Hulkenberg joked: "Verstappen? I think I've heard of him.

"Seriously, I get along very well with him but at the moment I am not getting carried away with such thoughts.

"If it doesn't work out then I'll keep looking. I have nothing specific but there are various enquiries from other racing series," said the German.


Red Bull engine plan heading for 'compromise'

Christian Horner pictured on July 19, 2020© Reuters

Ferrari and even Renault appear to be moving towards a compromise solution that would allow Red Bull to run its own Honda engines in 2022 and beyond.

Red Bull is saying it can take over the Honda IP and operations following the Japanese manufacturer's departure from Formula 1 late next year, but only if the other manufacturers agree to a 2022 engine development 'freeze'.

Mercedes has already agreed.

"We understand their (Red Bull's) intention to keep using their Honda engine for the future," Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto said on Friday.

"We had meetings in the last days with F1 and the FIA. I think as Ferrari, we understand the situation. We are somehow supportive in trying to anticipate by one season, one year, the freezing of the engines."

Binotto said a one-year fast-forward of the planned 2023 development freeze will mean all-new engine regulations should also be brought forward by a year to 2025.

But he also said that if engines are frozen for 2022, there should be "a mechanism of engine convergence" - meaning that under-performing engines can be brought closer to the leaders' pace.

Red Bull's Christian Horner welcomed the news that Ferrari is now on board.

"I think all the major leaders in the automotive industry - the heads of the carmakers - recognise that investing in developing these existing engines is not rational when all new technologies are coming in for 2025 or 2026," he said.

"I think for Renault, too, it would also be logical to agree with this, but we'll see. What is encouraging is that Ferrari are ready to support our position," added Horner.

As for Renault, technical boss Marcin Budkowski said the French marque actually pushed for a 2022 engine freeze prior to Honda's decision to quit F1 - and Red Bull-Honda rejected it.

"It's quite interesting that now Red Bull is very much in favour of a freeze," he said. "We're not opposed to it as long as it has the correct timeline.

"Whether that's mid-'22, or end of '22, that's to be discussed, but it's a position we've always defended. We can't say we're going to freeze from '21, it's too late for that and we've invested time and effort in a new specification of engine.

"But we are happy to find a compromise and do the right thing for the sport as long as it's reasonable," Budkowski added.



More news from Formula 1:

On This Day - Nico Rosberg crowned Formula 1 world champion
The German emulated his father Keke, the 1982 world champion. Read more.

Stray dog interrupts Bahrain qualifying as Lewis Hamilton sets pace
A canine track invader caused a further delay under the floodlights in Manama. Read more.

F1 drivers slam Pirelli's proposed 2021 tyre
Top Formula 1 drivers have slammed Pirelli's proposed new tyres for 2021. Read more.

Schumacher wanted Raikkonen as first F1 teammate
Mick Schumacher has hinted at disappointment that he will not make his Formula 1 debut next year at Alfa Romeo. Read more.

Pirelli boss tips Hamilton to keep dominating
Mario Isola is tipping Mercedes to keep on dominating in 2021. Read more.

Kubica admits 'people think I'm not fast'
Robert Kubica says he is no longer on the Formula 1 grid "because people think I'm not fast". Read more.

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