Christian Horner reacts to prospect of Adrian Newey joining Ferrari

Newey has worked with Horner for 18 years but the engineer will leave the world champions at the start of 2025

Kieran Jackson
Formula 1 Correspondent
Friday 03 May 2024 19:31 BST
F1 design genius Adrian Newey to leave Red Bull in wake of Christian Horner scandal

Christian Horner believes Adrian Newey will “take some time” to decide his future – but refused to rule out the prospect that Red Bull’s design guru could join Ferrari next year.

Red Bull confirmed the departure of their chief technical officer Newey, the man praised with this current era of car which is dominating Formula 1 currently, earlier this week after 18 years.

Newey had a contract until the end of 2025 – signed last May – but is said to be unhappy with the current power struggle within the team, focused on team principal Horner and long-term adviser Helmut Marko, in the wake of the scandal engulfing F1 boss Horner and his conduct towards a female colleague.

Now, Newey is set to leave early next year, with Ferrari the most likely destination for his services where he would potentially form a partnership with Lewis Hamilton in Italy in 2025. Aston Martin have also made a big-money offer.

Red Bull F1 boss Horner, speaking at the Miami Grand Prix to Sky Sports, was asked whether Newey could join a rival team: “He’s going to take some time out first. He’s 65 years of age and has earned that right to take some time out.

“If he decides that he wants to have another run at Formula 1, who knows?”

Horner, however, denied the notion that Newey’s departure is a result of the power struggle behind the scenes at Red Bull.

“No, absolutely not. It’s been coming for some time. It’s been on his mind, what better time to go then with the run of form we’ve had.

“He’s stepping aside from Formula 1 while we’re right at the top of our game. There’s sadness that we see him part but the show goes on.

Christian Horner was pictured with Adrian Newey in Miami on Friday
Christian Horner was pictured with Adrian Newey in Miami on Friday (Getty Images)

“Adrian has had such a wonderful career, hard at it the last 30 years.

“He’s reached a point where the team is in great shape, he feels now is the right time to step away and take some time out. He’ll still be working on the RB17 track car. It was the right time for him to take a break.

“Adrian is a formidable engineer, scratching for the last bit of engineering. But most of all I’ll miss the camaraderie, highs and lows over those 18 years.

“We’ve had to think about this moment for some time, it was going to come at some point. The structure we have in place is well set to take up the baton and continue to produce fantastic cars.”

Newey has led Red Bull to seven drivers’ championships - four with Sebastian Vettel and three with Max Verstappen - following a distinguished career prior to that at Williams and McLaren.

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