Ted Kravitz notices ‘strange thing’ about Adrian Newey’s early release from Red Bull

Thomas Maher
Adrian Newey, Red Bull, 2024 Miami Grand Prix.

Ted Kravitz has questioned why Adrian Newey negotiated an early release if he has no plans on going elsewhere.

Adrian Newey negotiating his way out of his contract early has raised Ted Kravitz’s eyebrows, given Newey’s reasoning that he is just tired of F1.

Newey will depart Red Bull after the first quarter of 2025, having been under contract until the end of the 2025 season, with the chief technical officer beginning his ‘gardening leave’ period as he withdraws from F1 duties and concentrates on Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar.

Ted Kravitz questions Adrian Newey’s negotiations

With Newey becoming a free agent by mid-2025, allowing him to join a rival team ahead of the revolutionary 2026 regulations if he so pleases, Sky F1 broadcaster Ted Kravitz has questioned why Newey felt the need to negotiate an early release given his purported reasons for leaving.

Newey, speaking in Miami, said he isn’t just leaving Red Bull but, for now, is taking a break from F1 with an eye towards deciding whether or not he wants another challenge within the sport.

“Formula 1 is all-consuming,” he said.

“I’ve been at it for a long time now. 2021 was a really busy year because of the tight battle with Mercedes through the championship and, at the same time, putting all the research and development into the RB18, which is the father of this generation of cars.

“I don’t know. There comes a point, I think, where I just felt, as Forrest Gump said, ‘I’m feeling a little bit tired’.”

Kravitz is taking this explanation with a pinch of salt, saying: “That he’s going or might take a year out and sail the world or go campervanning around Europe with his delightful wife Amanda is neither here nor there.

“But the strange thing about it is that he had a contract to the end of 2025. Then he had a year’s non-compete clause, and a gardening leave cause clause, to the end of 2026.

“So, if he was just retiring and going on holidays and going on walkabout and going sailing, then he wouldn’t have minded what his gardening leave period said – it makes no difference to him.

“But clearly, he wanted to negotiate that down – which he did with the help of Eddie Jordan, who’s now his manager.

“He’s negotiated, and how Christian Horner and Helmut Marko and whoever is in charge of these things at Red Bull allowed Adrian Newey to successfully negotiate an early release from his gardening leave clause, I don’t know.

“But he did and all credit to him, well done! EJ has still got the negotiation skills.”

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With Newey able to rejoin the sport at any point if he feels like it once he departs the Red Bull campus for the final time, Kravitz also questioned why Red Bull opted not to fight Newey on his leaving – given the fact that they could have held him to his contract and ensured he was out of the hands of a rival team for a little bit longer.

“Now Adrian can work for somebody else, another Formula 1 team or anyone else that he wants to, pretty much from the day that he leaves Red Bull in April 2025,” Kravitz said.

“Well done, Adrian. We’ll see what happens. That’s the big question that everybody is asking – not how much they will be hurt by his leaving, clearly they will be hurt by his leaving, but why Red Bull let him go so easily.”

Newey was spotted on the grid ahead of the Miami Grand Prix Sprint race in discussion with Ferrari vice-chairman Piero Ferrari, while Lewis Hamilton – joining Ferrari next season – said he “very much” wants to work with Newey if Ferrari and Fred Vasseur can tempt him to the Scuderia.

“Honestly, it’s very kind of Lewis to say that, I’m very flattered,” said Newey of Hamilton’s comments.

“But at the moment, it’s just take a little bit of a break and see what happens next.”

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