Newey not done yet with F1: ‘I’ll probably go again’

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Formula 1 design legend Adrian Newey is poised for a new chapter, but all signs point to it remaining within the world of F1.

After an illustrious 18-year tenure at Red Bull, Newey is set to depart the team that he helped propel to championship glory along with Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen.

Newey's unexpected exit from Red Bull appears to be a confluence of factors.

Whispers of internal political unrest at the Milton Keynes-based and an investigation surrounding Christian Horner, though ultimately dismissed, might have contributed to his decision.

But the 65-year-old Briton admits that he’s also overdue for a break from Grand Prix racing’s pressures and relentless demands.

Newey will continue to attend a selection of races until the end of the current season, while his main focus will be on completing Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar, a project that is set for a grand unveiling at this summer’s Goodwood Festival of Speed.

It’s anybody’s guess how long the design guru’s recess from Formula 1 will last, but Newey himself has offered the strongest indication yet this his journey in the sport isn’t quite over.

During a conversation with close friend and manager Eddie Jordan at an Oyster Yachts event at the Monaco Historic Grand Prix last weekend, Newey acknowledged the unexpected nature of his potential return to a rival F1 team.

“If you’d asked me 15 years ago, at the age of 65 would I seriously be considering changing teams, going somewhere else and doing another four or five years, I’d have said you’re absolutely mad,” Newey said.

The playful jab hints at an enduring passion for F1, perhaps suggesting that Newey is eager to tackle the challenges and opportunities presented by the sport’s 2026 regulation changes.

But the Briton alluded to something more personal that might keep him in the fast lane: the decline in enthusiasm of his own father - a vetenarian - after he retired at a similar age.

This desire to stay engaged is further fueled by the examples set by motorsport titans Bernie Ecclestone and Roger Penske.

Ecclestone, despite being well into his 90s, remains actively involved in business, while Penske, the dominant figure in American racing, continues to thrive at the age of 87.

Their continued vitality seems to have convinced Newey that remaining active, even in a new environment, could be the key to maintaining his own drive and passion.

“I asked them both: 'What’s your secret?’ Because they’ve kept going and going, and for their age they’re phenomenally mentally agile and physically agile," Newey said.

“They both said that old thing that the brain is like a muscle, it needs exercise and so you need to keep doing that.

“Also, I’ve wanted to work in motor racing as a designer since I was the age of eight or 10. I’ve been lucky enough to fulfil that ambition, to have got that first job and been in motor racing ever since. So every day has just been a bonus, really. I just love what I do.

“I guess I’ll have a bit of a holiday. I feel a little bit tired at the moment. But at some point, I’ll probably go again.”

Newey admits that the announcement of his departure from Red Bull ahead of the Miami Grand Prix cast an unintended shadow.

It coincided with the 30th anniversary of Ayrton Senna's tragic death at Imola, at the wheel of a Williams car designed by Newey.

He expressed regret for the timing, and the sheer volume of media attention surrounding his exit also seemed to take him by surprise.

Adrian Newey and Artyon Senna at Williams, 1994


“It was a very difficult and unfortunate day for that press release to come out," Newey said.

“The Miami Grand Prix itself was strange because I was there in a strategy function, hence being on the pitwall, but I wasn’t involved in any of the engineering decisions, or in any of the engineering meetings, I was just being wheeled around for press, basically.

“I never thought it would be big news, to be perfectly honest, I never really thought about it. For it to be in all the flipping papers and on the telly and stuff was almost a bit of a shock.”

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