Adrian Newey has joined fellow Red Bull officials in angrily pointing the finger at Renault.
After Renault struggled at the start of the turbo V6 era last year, the formerly title-winning team is back in trouble one year later in Melbourne.
Team figures have slammed Red Bull’s French partner for making apparently backwards progress over the winter.
“I have no idea how they have managed to **** it up so badly,” boss Christian Horner told the BBC in Melbourne.
Now, car designer Newey has joined the chorus.
“It’s frustrating that we’ve got an engine which is a long way behind with no obvious light at the end of the tunnel and all sorts of failings,” he said.
The latest rumour is that divorce is nigh, after Dr Helmut Marko confirmed that Renault has opened talks to take over the Toro Rosso team.
More immediately, however, Red Bull-Renault needs to speed up in 2015.
“We keep trying to offer to get involved,” said Newey. “It’s one thing where you’re not competitive but you can see your way out of it. It’s another when you’re not competitive and your partner doesn’t seem to be willing to deal with you.
“There seems a real reluctance by Renault to engage us,” he added.
Not only that, the wilder paddock rumblings in Melbourne are that Red Bull is tiring of F1 altogether. Newey’s frustrating has already boiled over, as he has taken a step back in order to get involved in America’s Cup yacht design.
He said the huge disparity between Mercedes’ engine performance and the other engine manufacturers in F1 is an example of the FIA’s failings.
“I think the FIA needs to be a bit more active rather than being completely passive and saying ‘Well, that’s not our problem’.
“They can’t just give up,” he insisted. “There has to be some governance.” (GMM)