Ted Kravitz shares Red Bull response to Adrian Newey claim after ‘very unfortunate’ announcement timing

Michelle Foster
Adrian Newey, Red Bull, 2024 Bahrain Grand Prix.

Red Bull's Adrian Newey.

Red Bull announced Adrian Newey’s departure on 1 May 2024, on the 30th anniversary of Ayrton Senna’s death behind the wheel of a Newey-designed Williams F1 car.

The Briton called it “very unfortunate” with Sky F1’s Ted Kravitz saying the design guru was “disappointed” with Red Bull’s timing.

‘It’s a very difficult and unfortunate day for that press release to come out’

Red Bull announced in the build-up to the Miami Grand Prix that this season would be Newey’s last full campaign with the Milton Keynes squad and he will depart early next year.

The press release came out on 1 May.

That day marks one of the worst in Formula 1’s history as Senna lost his life when he crashed at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix at Imola while driving the Newey-designed Williams FW16.

That Red Bull announced his exit on the anniversary of that day was “very unfortunate” according to Newey.

“The news was just broken in the press on a very unfortunate day,” he said during a recent Oyster Yachts Q&A. “It was the 1st of May, which is that horrible 30th anniversary of the horrible events of Imola 30 years ago.

“So it’s a very difficult and unfortunate day for that press release to come out.”

Kravitz reckons the 65-year-old was “disappointed” with his team’s ill-timed announcement.

“Adrian Newey has been talking,” Kravitz said in his Notebook, “where he seems to be disappointed that Red Bull issued the press release announcing his departure from Red Bull on May the 1st, the 30th anniversary of Ayrton Senna’s passing in a Newey car.”

But that, Kravitz says, was not the only thing “Newey seems to be rather upset about” during his yacht chat with Eddie Jordan.

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Revealing he was banned from all of Red Bull’s technical meetings at the Miami Grand Prix in the wake of the announcement, Red Bull countered that by saying it was only the meetings relating to future Red Bull designs.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Red Bull technical director Pierre WachĂ© said: “At the moment, currently, as he has the potential to go to a competitor – like every leaver.

It doesn’t matter about your name, there is a risk to pick up some IP on the current car – and the future car even more.”

Kravitz weighed in on the back-and-forth, saying he believes Wache’s comments are a sign the tech director does not believe Newey will be retiring from F1.

“He’s been saying that he’s been excluded… was brought to Miami in a strategy role only because, he says in this interview, he wasn’t involved in any of the technical meetings for Red Bull in Miami,” said the Sky F1 pit lane reporter.

“Now I asked Pierre Wache about this and Pierre said, ‘No, that’s not true, what do you mean?’ I explained what Adrian had said.

“And he said, ‘Well, no, he’s talking about some of the future meetings where we’re discussing intellectual property for Red Bull Racing that Adrian could take with him if he goes to a competitor’.

“So Wache clearly doesn’t believe that Newey is to retire unlike some other people in Red Bull Racing, and thinks that he is indeed going to go to a competitor probably, well, who knows whether it’s Ferrari or McLaren or Williams or Mercedes or what?

“But that’s the reason why Newey naturally, as anybody leaving the team, said Wache, would be excluded from meetings discussing future intellectual property, because you don’t want anybody leaving the team, a leaver as Wache says, taking the good stuff from Red Bull to another team.

“So seems to be some sort of… maybe it’s just… well Adrian said he was excluded from all the meetings, Wache said he was only excluded as it would naturally be so from meetings that would be talking about the future intellectual property of Red Bull Racing.”

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