Could Red Bull lose F1 design guru to Merc? Newey’s contract ‘up for renewal’

Damon Hill has questioned whether Red Bull F1 design guru Adrian Newey could be interested in making the switch to rivals Mercedes. 

Newey’s contract with Red Bull is “up for renewal” this year, according to F1 Nation Podcast host Tom Clarkson. 

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The 64-year-old Briton is regarded as one of the greatest technical minds in F1 history, with his car designs helping Red Bull win all 11 of their world championship titles. 

Newey is the mastermind behind Red Bull’s dominant RB18 and RB19 offerings, having aced F1’s ground-effect-style aerodynamics regulations that came into force in 2022. 

And 1996 F1 world champion Hill has suggested Newey may be tempted to jump ship and help Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton return to winning ways. 

"His success rate is unbelievable, every team he’s been to virtually he’s won a Constructors’ Championship, drivers’ titles, I’ve lost count how many, so he’s a key man and what he has to offer any team is invaluable,” Hill said on the F1 Nation Podcast.  

"I can’t help ignoring this thing he did in Bahrain, where he stood in front of the Mercedes on the grid, with his clipboard, and stood there for a long time looking at their front wings. 

“Anybody who knows Adrian will go: ‘Wait a minute, he’s already got the most dominant car in F1, why’s he looking at the Mercedes front wings?’.

"Was he really looking at the front wings? Or was he just standing in front of a Mercedes saying: ‘I’m interested’. Is that what he was really saying?”

Could Red Bull lose F1 design guru to Merc? Newey’s contract ‘up for renewal’

Mercedes endured a torrid 2022 campaign after being caught out by F1’s new regulations and the team have made another miserable start to the new season with their troubled W14 car. 

Toto Wolff has applied pressure to Mercedes’ design team to come up with “radical changes” after admitting his team were wrong to continue pursuing their unconventional ‘zeropod’ concept. 

Mercedes are expected to converge to the sidepod design originally pioneered by Newey’s Red Bull squad, and which has since been replicated by many teams up and down the grid. 

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