Wednesday, 05 december 2018, 04:45 , by Matthew Scott
Pierre Gasly has backed Honda to close the gap to Mercedes and Ferrari in Formula 1's battle for horsepower as Red Bull hope for the boost needed to put the Frenchman, Max Verstappen and the team into title contention next year.
Gasly will step up from Toro Rosso for next year, having worked with Honda throughout 2018 and previously during his time in Super Formula.
After four years of title dominance with Renault, the dawning of the V6 Hybrid era has seen Mercedes take over as F1's prominent force and Red Bull's relationship with the French marque grow increasingly fractious.
Despite Honda's previously messy partnership with McLaren upon its F1 return, Red Bull have spoken with regular confidence that things will be different next year, something Gasly also believes.
Asked by Sky Sports if Honda will be able to match the power of Mercedes and Ferrari, Gasly said: "Pretty close. I really believe in this project and I can see how much work and dedication they are putting [in].
"I'm sure they are going to close it at some point.
"We just need to give them time but I'm sure with the experience of Red Bull, mixing these two really strong companies, they will come up with something really exciting for next year."