Gerhard Berger sold his 50 per cent share of the Toro Rosso team back to Red Bull because of the 'customer car' issue.

Gerhard Berger sold his 50 per cent share of the Toro Rosso team back to Red Bull because of the 'customer car' issue.

It was previously understood that Dietrich Mateschitz, the owner of Red Bull Racing, wanted to offload his 50 per cent STR share, because of the tightening rules about non-constructors.

Like Red Bull, Toro Rosso races a car designed by Red Bull Technologies.

The practice has been highly controversial, and all teams have now been told categorically they must design and build their own cars by 2010.

"The rules about non-designers makes it very difficult for Toro Rosso to continue to develop," Berger, a former winner of 10 grands prix, told Austria's APA news agency.

"(Red Bull's) support for Toro Rosso no longer exists to the extent that we can continue to make progress. The precondition for me (to be involved) is the chance of success."

In a statement issued by Red Bull, Berger said: "A 100 per cent financing of a joint project by one partner can only make sense, to my mind, at an initial stage. This stage is over now.

"That's why Red Bull will take over the shares again."

It is understood that Red Bull's full control will make Toro Rosso easier to sell.

Berger told APA that he will no longer be involved at all. "This is no big secret," he explained.

 

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