Guenther Steiner suspects main Adrian Newey exit reason and his next move

Michelle Foster
Adrian Newey looking at the Red Bull RB20 front wing.

Red Bull design guru Adrian Newey will leave the team in 2025

Despite Christian Horner’s insistence that all is well between himself and Adrian Newey, something pushed the design guru to leave Red Bull and Guenther Steiner reckons it was “the stuff which happened at the beginning of the year”.

After 19 years with Red Bull and 12 championship titles, potentially two more to follow, Newey will leave Red Bull in the first quarter of 2025 with the design legend having already stepped back from the team’s F1 operations.

‘It is just one of the things with all the stuff which happened’

Leaving the team despite signing a two-year contract last season that should’ve run through to the end of 2025, Newey has already has “no access” to Red Bull’s data, nor is the man with the famed notebook “drawing parts”.

But while Horner and Newey have downplayed their parting of ways, whispers in the paddock continue to link it to February’s off-track drama and the Horner investigation.

Horner was investigated by Red Bull’s parent company after an allegation of inappropriate behaviour, which was dismissed, but it was widely speculated that Newey wasn’t happy about the saga or the politics involved.

Steiner wasn’t shocked to hear that Newey would be leaving the team.

“It is a little bit like the Lewis [Hamilton] thing, that did surprise me, but am I shocked? No,” the ex-Haas team boss told RacingNews365.

“Adrian was there a long time, and it is just one of the things with all the stuff which happened at the beginning of the year – I don’t know the details of it and maybe there is some friction there.

“He just decided that ‘I want to do something else before I retire’ because he is still good.”

More on Adrian Newey’s Red Bull exit

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👉Max Verstappen reveals crucial advice to Adrian Newey with Red Bull exit confirmed

Ferrari will make Adrian Newey ‘fit’ in whatever role he wants

As for what comes next for the 65-year-old, while Newey says he does not have any plans, the 25-time championship winner has been linked to a move to Ferrari.

Steiner believes Ferrari team boss Fred Vasseur would do whatever is required to “fit” Newey into any role he wanted to ensure the acclaimed designer linked up with the Ferrari-bounded Hamilton.

“I would think at the moment that he would fit in, but I don’t know in which role,” the Italian continued.

“I don’t know if he wants to work the whole year, or just giving concept ideas and stuff like this, but I think Fred would make it work that he fits in there.

“And then obviously working with Lewis, it would be quite a cool thing to do for both of them.”

But that Newey could even swap to another team next season is what has surprised Steiner the most in all of this with the Briton taking early ‘gardening leave’.

He, however, is hoping that should Newey join another team, that would shake up F1’s pecking order. But that won’t happen before 2026.

“What surprised me is that he can go and work for another team already next year, I think we are all surprised by that one,” he said.

“Red Bull will have a good 2025 car with or without Adrian. Will he change a car in 2025 if he joins a team in ’25? No.

“But it is 2026, that is what I always see in F1.

“The short-term, that is what I always see in F1, it is very clearly written down what is happening and in the medium to long-term, it is about who will be at which place in two or three years.

“That is what is needed now in Formula 1, with your investments and your people because everything is so long-term.”

Read next: Christian Horner sets record straight on Adrian Newey relationship after ‘falling out’ claim