Login
My Garage
New hero

Adrian Newey set to leave Red Bull amid controversy surrounding Christian Horner

By Mathilda Bartholomew | April 26, 2024

Share

Why not leave a comment?

See all | Add a comment

Newey's contract with Red Bull extends until the end of 2025, yet he is reportedly confident that he can negotiate an early departure to join another team for the upcoming season.

Adrian Newey set to leave Red Bull amid controversy surrounding Christian Horner

Adrian Newey, considered one of Formula 1's greatest designers, is set to leave Red Bull Racing following the controversy involving allegations against team principal Christian Horner. BBC Sport has learned that the 65-year-old has informed Red Bull of his decision to move on.

The situation stemmed from accusations of sexual harassment and abusive behaviour against Horner by a female employee, which he denies. Newey, unsettled by the internal dynamics at Red Bull, is reportedly exploring opportunities elsewhere.

Newey's contract with Red Bull runs until the end of 2025, but he reportedly believes he can arrange an early exit that would enable him to join another team starting next season.

While linked strongly with Ferrari and having received an offer from Aston Martin, Newey's availability is likely to attract interest from other top teams.

His desire to depart, first reported by Germany's Auto Motor und Sport, has been independently verified by BBC Sport with sources close to Red Bull and Newey.

Newey's departure is reportedly rooted in his dissatisfaction with the situation surrounding Horner, which has triggered a complex power struggle within Red Bull. Despite an internal investigation clearing Horner of wrongdoing, the complainant's appeal has contributed to ongoing tensions.

Horner and Red Bull motorsport adviser Helmut Marko are apparently at odds, along with key figures like Thai shareholder Chalerm Yoovidhya, who supported Horner, and Red Bull GmbH in Austria, initially seeking to remove him from his role.

Adrian Newey has been with Red Bull since 2005, overseeing two standout periods of success: from 2010 to 2014, when the team claimed four consecutive drivers’ and constructors’ titles with Sebastian Vettel, and the ongoing era with Max Verstappen.

Last season, Verstappen and Red Bull achieved unparalleled dominance in F1 history, with the Dutch driver winning 19 out of 22 races, while the team secured all but one victory. They appear poised for another strong showing this season, having won four out of the first five races.

As Red Bull’s chief technical officer, Newey now divides his time between F1 and other projects within the company, including the upcoming RB17 supercar.

Horner has highlighted the team’s strengths under Newey's leadership, working closely with technical director Pierre Wache.

Verstappen, contracted until the end of 2028, has expressed concerns about the team's internal dynamics. While he has been asked to fully support Horner on several occasions, his responses have been mixed.

Verstappen has consistently emphasised his desire for a stable team environment. He reaffirmed his contentment at the Chinese Grand Prix, stating,  "I signed a long deal. The only thing I said from the beginning is we want to have a peaceful environment, lately we have been talking about the car.

"I am happy about that, I am happy with the team and there has never been a reason to leave."

Although Verstappen can potentially only leave if Helmut Marko's position changes, he would view Newey's departure as a significant loss, despite having less contractual flexibility in this scenario.

Mercedes is actively pursuing Verstappen and aims to secure his services for the 2025 or 2026 seasons.

Related Articles

Michael Schumacher's debut F1 car hits the market
The Jordan 191 chassis number six is an iconic car in F1 history, largely due to Eddie Jordan's daring decision to give a young German...
May 17, 2024
Apple's innovative solution to tackle travel sickness
The latest iOS update in September, will include a 'Vehicle Motion Cues' feature to help users overcome motion sickness
May 16, 2024
New technology targets drivers avoiding fines with 'stealth plates'
It's estimated that up to one in 15 drivers are equipping their vehicles with number plates featuring anti-ANPR technology.
May 15, 2024
VW launches moving new ‘YourWagen’ campaign
The new VW ad was launched in the UK last week and has got people talking
May 14, 2024