Marko 'convinced' Horner not to join Ferrari after Binotto exit

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Helmut Marko has revealed that he went the extra mile at the end of last year to convince longstanding Red Bull team boss Christian Horner not to join Ferrari as Mattia Binotto's successor.

Red Bull Racing's hegemony in Formula 1, first between 2010 and 2013 and then more recently in 2022, has logically sharpened the interest of its rivals in key members of the Milton Keynes-based outfit as they seek to acquire similar expertise to enhance their own competitiveness.

Red Bull's chief technical officer Adrian Newey – perhaps the greatest designer in the history of F1 – has been head-hunted by Ferrari multiple times in the past.

The House of Maranello's most recent offer was tabled back in 2014, at a time when Red Bull was struggling for performance with down-on-power engine partner Renault, which led to many sleepless nights for Newey.


"It was a very difficult decision," remembered Newey. "Ferrari came up with an incredible offer, very attractive, and it caused me a lot of sleepless nights deciding what to do and who to go for.

"In the end, it would have felt wrong to walk out on Red Bull."

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Looking back on Newey's dilemma nearly a decade ago, Marko remembered a few sleepless nights of his own and one in particular during which he succeeded in convincing Red Bull's design guru to remain at Milton Keynes.

"[Ferrari chairman Luca di] Montezemelo was already cheering in the paddock and wanted to announce the deal," Marko told Blick.

"But during the night we were able to change Newey’s mind."

The Austrian then went on to explain how he had exerted substantial efforts at the end of last year to persuade Horner not to join the Scuderia in the wake of Mattia Binotto's resignation after the Briton has received a firm offer from Ferrari.

"It took me another whole night to convince Horner to stay at Red Bull," the 80-year-old recounted. "And it cost us millions more."

In the end, the Italian outfit set its sights on luring Sauber/Alfa Romeo team boss Frederic Vasseur to Maranello, which it successfully accomplished.

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