Revealed: Why Adrian Newey missed the Brazilian Grand Prix

Jamie Woodhouse
Red Bull design guru Adrian Newey walking down the tunnel with Red Bull accolades on the wall.

Adrian Newey walking in a tunnel.

Rather than attending the Brazilian Grand Prix with Red Bull, design chief Adrian Newey was busy driving different racing machinery with Ford boss Jim Farley.

Formula 1 was at Interlagos over the past weekend for the Brazilian Grand Prix, an event which proved to be business as usual for Red Bull.

After Max Verstappen took a comfortable victory in the sprint, he repeated that achievement on Grand Prix Sunday, stretching his record-breaking tally for the season to 17 GP wins.

Adrian Newey in Classic Daytona action

The Red Bull RB19 is perhaps Newey’s greatest Formula 1 creation yet, though he was not present at Interlagos to watch Verstappen drive it to a double victory.

Instead, Newey, alongside Ford CEO Farley, was competing, or rather dominating (very Red Bull), in the 2023 Classic 24 at Daytona at the wheel of the 1965 Ford GT40 in Group A, as classics from the 1950s-70s were on show.

Speaking to The Telegraph, Newey, who will return to Red Bull duties for the Las Vegas Grand Prix, shed further light on his schedule, confirming that he will have been present at 16 F1 2023 rounds, out of 22 in total, once the season is complete.

“I think I will have done 16 races by the end of the year,” said Newey, “which used to be a full season!”

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In a campaign where Red Bull has blown away the competition, winning 19 of the 20 grands prix so far, great praise has understandably been heaped on Newey for his contributions at the head of the design team.

However, Newey, who has designed title-winning cars for Williams, McLaren and Red Bull, revealed that these days only half of his time is devoted to Red Bull’s Formula 1 efforts.

Asked how much of his time actually goes into F1 now, Newey replied: “It’s difficult to say exactly, but I would say roughly 50 per cent.

“I suppose I’m a bit of a maverick in as much as… I’ve managed to get to a situation now where it [the F1 engineering team] can operate procedurally without me, which allows me to be spoilt enough to be able to get involved in any area I feel like.”

Red Bull has long-since been focusing on their F1 2024 challenger, the RB20, which the team hope will add further title glory to the team’s and Newey’s name.

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