Red Bull standing firm over Fallows release date

Jon Wilde
Christian Horner Otmar Szafnauer

Christian Horner Otmar Szafnauer

Christian Horner has poured cold water on Aston Martin’s hopes of bringing in their newly-appointed technical director Dan Fallows ahead of schedule.

Fallows was recently announced as part of a series of technical staff acquisitions by Aston Martin, along with Luca Furbatto (engineering director) and Andrew Alessi (head of technical operations) who joined from Alfa Romeo and Red Bull respectively.

It was Fallows’ move that was proving the most contentious, however, with Red Bull team principal Horner saying they planned to keep him for two more years under the terms of his contact and his Aston Martin counterpart, Otmar Szafnauer, then scoffing at that claim.

But Horner has doubled down on his words, suggesting there will be no ‘gardening leave’ for Fallows and that Red Bull plan to get full value from the head of aerodynamics who had committed his future to the team relatively recently.

“Our situation with Dan is really clear. He’s working on the [2021] car, he is working on next year’s car,” said Horner, quoted by

“He’s still got a significant amount of time. He only signed the contract at the end of last year, so there’s a significant period of time before mid-2023 comes up. We’ll obviously keep him busy during the rest of his contract.”

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What is likely to have only strengthened Horner’s stance is the departure of Alessi, who was able to start work on the day his arrival was announced by Red Bull – the eve of the Austrian Grand Prix weekend.

As well as the three external appointments, Aston Martin also made two significant internal promotions with Tom McCullough appointed performance director and long-serving Andrew Green named chief technical officer – having joined the Silverstone-based team when they were founded as Jordan in 1990 and then returned in 2010 after 12 years away.

They are unlikely to be the last announcements either, for Szafnauer says Aston Martin have not yet completed their recruitment programme.

“It’s still a work in progress and there are a few more senior positions we are looking to fill,” he said. “Some of which we filled we will announce soon, and others will follow.”

Asked if the recent staff additions were typical F1 poachings or more a result of personnel being available as bigger teams have had to let employees go due to the budget cap, Szafnauer said: “I think it’s the former rather than the latter.”

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