Red Bull has confirmed reports that Adrian Newey will stay with the team beyond the 2014 Formula 1 season.
Earlier it was reported that the reigning champion team had devised a cunning plan to keep the highly sought-after engineer out of the clutches of its big-paying key rivals.
Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport said that Red Bull are building a new technology centre near their Formula 1 factory in Milton-Keynes, where new and innovative technical projects will be born – with none other than Newey in charge.
Reportedly, the projects will range from innovative road cars to aircraft, “with the secret hope that someday he will miss competition and crawl back to Formula 1″, said correspondent Michael Schmidt.
Shortly after those reports emerged, Red Bull announced in Montreal that it has inked a new “multi-year agreement” with the Briton.
The team confirmed that Newey, 55, will work on “new Red Bull Technology projects”, as well as “advising and mentoring” the Formula 1 team “as it develops its Formula 1 cars over the next few seasons”.
In the past weeks, there have been reports of audacious offers to woo Formula 1’s most highly rated designer. Ferrari’s offer reportedly topped $20 million per year, while it was also reported that Mercedes expressed interest, but Team Chairman Niki Lauda claimed, “We made him no offer.”
Nonetheless, Newey is understandably in high demand, given his astonishing title hit-rate. But the 55-year-old is also unashamedly frustrated with the state of today’s Formula 1, featuring ever-restrictive technical regulations.
“What you can do with the car to make [a winning] difference with good ideas is less and less,” he said. “We’re moving to more of a GP1 series.”
The Full statement reads: “Red Bull is pleased to confirm that it has extended its successful relationship with Adrian Newey with a new multi-year agreement. As part of this new agreement, Adrian will work on new Red Bull Technology projects, as well as advising and mentoring Infiniti Red Bull Racing as it develops its Formula One cars over the next few seasons.”
“The details of the new projects will be announced in due course. Adrian joined Infiniti Red Bull Racing at the beginning of the 2006 season as Chief Technical Officer. In 2010 the team won its first Drivers’ and Constructors’ World Championships; the Austrian-owned team has retained the titles ever since, winning both Championships again in 2011, 2012 and 2013.” (GP247-GMM)