Red Bull chief technical officer Adrian Newey is fully focused on the Formula 1 team again with Max Verstappen calling the RB16 “not a very fast car”.
Newey is considered one of the best engineers in Formula 1 history with his cars winning a combined ten Constructors’ Championships. He has created title-winning cars for McLaren, Williams and Red Bull, making him the only designer to have won Constructors’ titles with three different teams in Formula 1.
Newey designed the cars which brought Red Bull four Drivers’ and Constructors’ titles in a row between 2010-2013, though in recent years Newey has been heavily involved in the Valkyrie project alongside Aston Martin.
However, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner said Newey has now returned his full focus to the Formula 1 outfit.
“Obviously the last three or four years he’s been very much involved in the Valkyrie project during a period where he didn’t enjoy Formula 1 quite as much because, with the power unit we had at the time, we couldn’t compete,” Horner said.
“Now obviously he sees that we’re in a much more competitive position. So I think he’s enjoying what he’s doing, he’s motivated. It keeps him young. And he’s still got a huge work rate which keeps the young guys on their toes.
“It’s never just about one person, as we all know.
“Adrian in his function does a great job in mentoring and leading the technical side of the team, but we’ve got great strength and depth. It’s not just about one role, about one person.
“As Adrian over the last couple of years has stepped back with the Valkyrie project, we’ve brought in and strengthened the technical group with the likes of Pierre Wache and so on and the team has continued to win during that period.
“The team will always be obviously stronger with Adrian in it and focused on Formula 1.”
— Aston Martin Red Bull Racing (@redbullracing) September 7, 2020
Verstappen found himself lost in the midfield pack at the Italian Grand Prix before retiring with an engine issue, and the Dutchman said Monza highlighted the fact that Red Bull RB16 is “just not a very fast car”.
“I never expected to fight Mercedes here,” he said.
“And I was very interested to see how our car was going to go on low downforce.
“But I think it highlighted our issues already the whole year, that it’s just not a very fast car.
“Of course we are a bit down on power to Mercedes, especially, and that’s a given.
“But that is not the deficit we have to them, at the moment. It’s not that big, the deficit in power.
“From our side we just didn’t have a good balance in the car, but not only that, I think we were just lacking grip.”