Newey: Leaving Red Bull like ‘walking out on your family’

Adrian Newey (GBR) Red Bull Racing Chief Technical Officer. 07.05.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 5, Miami Grand Prix, Miami, Florida, USA, Race Day. -, EMail: © Copyright: Price / XPB Images
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Famed F1 designer Adrian Newey hasn’t entirely dismissed the possibility of leaving Red Bull Racing but admits that doing so would be like “walking out on your own family”.

Newey’s dealings with Ferrari over the years and the Scuderia’s persistent failure to poach the man widely regarded as one of the greatest F1 engineers of all time are well chronicled.

Earlier this year, the Briton conceded that turning down the Italian outfit’s advances was the biggest “emotional regret” of his career, while Red Bull team principal Christian Horner revealed that in 2014 Newey came within half an hour of leaving Milton Keynes for Maranello.

Speaking on David Coulthard’s Formula for Success podcast, Newey admits that Ferrari retains to this day an unrivaled fascination compared to any other manufacturer.

“Ferrari is this magic brand that I suppose in all honesty, probably everybody in motor racing is always fascinated by and tempted to join if there’s the opportunity,” he said.

“And I’ve been approached and come close three times now. One of those in IndyCar way back.

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“It’s an amazing brand. It has had all this mystique about it. It’s effectively the Italian national team, with all the pros and cons that come with that.

“And the cons are that if you don’t do a great job, you’re absolutely berated and torn apart. Of course, if you do a good job, then you’re a national hero. So that brings all its own pressures.

“But I mean for me, I have to try to take the passion, that side, out and approach it from an engineering side and the teams I’ve worked for I’ve hugely enjoyed.”


Newey’s over forty-year journey in F1 has taken him from March to Williams and later from McLaren to Red Bull, his current residence.

Under his draughtsmanship or supervision, Red Bull has fielded six championship winning cars that have delivered seven Driver’s title to Sebastian Vettel (4) and Max Verstappen (3).

Despite Ferrari’s incredible allure, there are several reasons why Newey has decided to remain with Red Bull.

Firstly, he has a strong relationship with Red Bull's management and employees who highly value and respect the Briton who therefore feels comfortable working with them.

Secondly, Newey believes in Red Bull's potential. He sees the team as being capable of achieving great things, and he wants to be a part of that ongoing journey.

Thirdly, Newey is evidently comfortable with Red Bull's culture. He appreciates the team's focus on innovation and its willingness to take risks as he believes that this is conducive to success in F1.

(L to R): Race winner Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing celebrates winning the World Championship with Adrian Newey (GBR) Red Bull Racing Chief Technical Officer; Dr Helmut Marko (AUT) Red Bull Motorsport Consultant and the team. 09.10.2022. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 18, Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan, Race

In addition to these factors, it is also possible that Newey has financial reasons for remaining with Red Bull. Ferrari is a wealthy team, but Red Bull are also well-funded.

It is no secret that Newey is being well-compensated for his outstanding work, and this may make it less appealing for him to move to Ferrari.

“Red Bull, which is largely in part to your advice David, because that’s a team I’ve been at, more or less from the start, it’s a team that I’ve been very centrally involved in developing the engineering side of that of the team,” Newey told Coulthard.

“So it’s a team I kind of feel comfortable with, we all know how we work.

“To change now, I’m not saying I would never ever change, you should never say that, but it would be like walking out on your family. Because that’s what it’s become.”

Never say never, but with each passing season, Newey appears set to remain a lifelong red bull.

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