Adrian Newey set to announce his Red Bull exit

Adrian Newey set to announce his Red Bull exit

Adrian Newey, widely regarded as one of Formula 1’s greatest designers, is allegedly set to announce his departure from Red Bull Racing.

Red Bull’s chief technical officer Adrian Newey is set to leave Red Bull when his contract expires amid the backdrop surrounding the Christian Horner controversy, as rival Formula 1 teams launch attempts to sign him.

According to reports from Auto Motor und Sport and BBC Sport, the Chief Technical Officer of the Milton Keynes-based outfit has informed team members of his intention to move on, possibly to work as a designer for a rival such as Scuderia Ferrari, Mercedes or Aston Martin as has been rumoured.

Whether this will be an immediate resignation, at the end of the current season or until his contract expires at the conclusion of the 2025 season remains to be seen.

Despite leading both Drivers’ and Constructors’ Championships in 2024 and coming into the current season as defending Champions, Newey is apparently unhappy with the work environment at Red Bull.

Newey has enjoyed unprecedented success with Red Bull, helping them to six Constructors’ crowns and seven Drivers’ Titles. They have dominated Formula 1 for the past three years, and cruised to 21 wins in 22 rounds last year courtesy primarily of star driver Verstappen.

It is believed that the 65-year-old has been unsettled by the allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior leveled against Red Bull team principal Christian Horner, although the latter has denied the allegations.

The investigation was concluded with no charges and the female member was suspended from the team. However, the accusations didn’t stop there, as rifts between Horner and senior advisor Helmut Marko and Max Verstappen’s father Jos were torn open.

AMuS contends that Newey is “unhappy about the power struggle in the team” and has sought to free himself from his contractual obligations with Red Bull which are believed to run until the end of 2025.

Furthermore, AMuS claim the designer has become unhappy about his step back from his oversight in F1, with the team channeling its CTO’s focus more towards the RB17 Hypercar project due to F1’s budget cap. Newey missed the Australian Grand Prix and Chinese Grand Prix recently but was on the Red Bull pit wall in Japan.

Last year, Newey signed a new three-year deal with Red Bull to stay with Milton Keynes until the conclusion of 2025 but, recently, rumours of lucrative offers from Aston Martin and Ferrari have emerged, with Newey also reportedly spotted at Bologna Airport in Italy to coincide with the Ferrari speculation.

Newey’s departure would be a seismic blow to Red Bull, even if the Briton has reduced his F1 workload in the past few years. The team’s engineering department also has a deep bench, led by technical director Pierre Wache.

However, with Newey under contract at Red Bull, a swift departure is unlikely given the huge financial blow that would be incurred on his end, as well as the necessary gardening leave period he would have to sit through before joining another team.

On the other hand, Newey is one of the most valuable names on the F1 grid – perhaps even more so than most of the drivers therefore financial losses are the least of his worries as he switches to another team .

Having been the engineering mastermind behind some of the most dominant F1 cars in history, with title-winning machines stemming back to the 1990s, Newey commands a huge pay packet rumoured at $10 million annually.

However, the impact of a Newey signing wouldn’t be immediate, regardless of the team. Contractual ‘gardening leave’ obligations and car development timelines mean his influence wouldn’t be felt until 2026 or even 2027 at the earliest.

This coincides with the introduction of new engine regulations requiring entirely new cars, a scenario where Newey’s expertise in adapting to fresh regulations has historically shone.

In the end however, Newey’s potential departure from Red Bull could simply signify his exit from F1 and a retreat to his second home in South Africa where he would be able to work remotely at a leisurely pace on various projects of interest.

Red Bull has stated that the team has no reason to believe that Adrian Newey is considering a move to a rival Formula 1 outfit. A short statement from Red Bull read: “Adrian is contracted until at last the end of 2025 and we are unaware of him joining any other team.”

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