Adrian Newey ‘interested’ in joining Mercedes

Adrian Newey started working for Red Bull in 2006 after replacing Haas team principal Guenther Steiner.

1996 Formula 1 World Champion Damon Hill has questioned whether Red Bull chief technology officer Adrian Newey is “interested” in joining rivals Mercedes, with the famous engineer’s contract reportedly “up for renewal”.

F1 journalist Tom Clarkson revealed that Newey’s contract is about to expire but that it’s “being discussed within the corridors of power” at the Milton Keynes-based team.

The likelihood is that Newey will remain at Red Bull having rejected offers at Mercedes and Ferrari in the past, especially given the fact that the Austrians have just announced a new partnership with Ford from 2026.

Newey is by far one of the “most successful car designers in Formula 1 history”, with cars designed by the engineer having claimed 23 titles to-date.

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Hill rates Newey as a “key man” and somebody who is “invaluable” to whatever team he works for, with the ex-F1 driver having rated his success rate as “unbelievable”.

“So those people who are not that familiar with the backroom people in Formula 1 that make things actually happen, Adrian Newey is by a long chalk one of the most successful, if not the most successful, car designer in Formula 1 history,” Hill said on the F1 Nation podcast.

“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 went on to discuss Newey’s antics before the race in Bahrain, where the engineer could be seen looking intently at both Mercedes’ and Aston Martin’s design.

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He doesn’t believe this can be simply ignored and is perhaps a sign of what is to come in the future, with Hill suggesting that perhaps Newey’s prepared to move elsewhere.

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“I can’t help ignoring this thing he [Newey] 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,” Hill continued.

“Anybody who knows Adrian will know ‘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?”