Red Bull chief technical officer Adrian Newey has played a key role in designing the cars that have dominated Formula 1 under the sport’s latest set of design regulations; watch the Miami GP exclusively live on Sky Sports F1 this weekend
Red Bull chief technical officer Adrian Newey has signed a contract that will keep him with the team for the “longer term”, team principal Christian Horner has confirmed.
Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko said at last weekend’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix that Newey, who is regarded as one of the best minds in F1 having designed multiple championship-winning cars, had agreed a new deal with the team.
Horner added further detail during Friday practice at this weekend’s Miami Grand Prix, when he told Sky Sports F1’s live coverage that Newey is “just as motivated as ever”.
“Adrian and I work together, we’ve been sitting next to each other, for 18 years now,” Horner said. “It was inevitable we were going to extend that.
“He’s a great part of the team, it’s great to have him with us and as the team continues to evolve we’ve got strength and depth, but to have Adrian for the longer term with us is fantastic for everyone in the team.”
Newey’s experience is considered by many to have been a key factor in Red Bull acing the new design regulations which were introduced to F1 last season, since when they have been the dominant team.
Max Verstappen won a record 15 races on his way to last season’s drivers’ title, while Red Bull also ended Mercedes’ streak of eight successive constructors’ crowns in dominant fashion.
Verstappen and team-mate Sergio Perez have won two races each to start the 2023 campaign, and already appear to be in a straight shootout for this year’s title.
Horner added: “A team is never just about one person but he (Newey) is a key player in our organisation and he enjoys the environment that he works in, he enjoys working with the young talented engineers.
“We’ve got some incredible talent that we’re nurturing and developing and that stimulates him. He’s 64 years young and just as motivated as ever.”
Horner rubbishes Ferrari recruitment reports | ‘No Red Bull hostages’
Speaking earlier on Friday at the team principals’ press conference, Horner also addressed rumours that Ferrari are in the process of signing personnel from Red Bull as Frederic Vasseur attempts to reshape the Italian team.
Ferrari’s reported attempts to recruit Red Bull personnel have been linked to the impending exit of their sporting director Laurent Mekies, who has agreed to become team principal of Red Bull’s junior team, AlphaTauri.
Vasseur said in Baku that negotiations are required to confirm the terms of Mekies’ exit, but Horner insists those discussions will not lead to any “senior or medium” level departures from Red Bull.
“Again, as usual, there’s plenty of speculation,” Horner said.
“Will there be a hostage exchange for Laurent Mekies? Well, we don’t have any hostages.
“So, in terms of personnel moving to Ferrari, certainly at a senior or medium level there’s nothing planned.”
Red Bull’s technical director Pierre Wache and head of aerodynamics Enrico Balbo have been named in reports as possible Ferrari targets, but Horner all but confirmed the key duo have rubbished the speculation.
“Individuals that have been mentioned in connection with Ferrari came to see me last week and mentioned their disbelief in some of these rumours,” Horner said.
“It’s Formula 1. That will inevitably happen.
“But there’s no plans for any senior members of our team to be joining Maranello.”
The Formula 1 season continues with the Miami GP this weekend. Watch qualifying at 9pm on Saturday with lights out at 8.30pm on Sunday. Get Sky Sports