Former McLaren driver names key factor that could persuade Adrian Newey to sign for Ferrari: "He likes to go beyond what is possible”

F1 Grand Prix of Monaco - Final Practice
Adrian Newey, the Chief Technical Officer of Oracle Red Bull Racing arrives in the Paddock prior to final practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco on May 25, 2024 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images)

Juan Pablo Montoya, the former McLaren driver, believes that the only condition that can make Adrian Newey move to Ferrari is if he is allowed to design road cars. Speaking to Racing News 365, the Columbian driver stated that the British engineer needs a side project with the Maranello team that piques his interest.

Red Bull Chief Designer, Adrian Newey has designed the Aston Martin Valkyrie edition in the past and is currently working on their Hypercar project, the RB17. It has always taken a challenge for the legendary aerodynamic wizard to work well in a team. The 2022 regulations almost brought Newey out of retirement to build Max Verstappen a dominant machine. However, his next destination after Red Bull still remains a concern.

With a lot of speculation linking Newey to Ferrari, Montoya feels that the Briton will expect to be associated with their supercar project. He believes that could be the key to signing the Briton for the Maranello team. Lewis Hamilton, who joins the team in 2025, is one of the drivers that has been on the wishlist of the Red Bull aero wizard. Several reports suggested the British champion was one of the factors linking the iconic designer to the Scarlet team.

Asked about Adrian Newey's next destination, Montoya said:

“I think the only reason he would go to Ferrari is if he could get to build road cars. If Ferrari said, 'The next five supercars you're in charge of, and you've got to build the F1 car', I think he would jump on that opportunity in a heartbeat because he likes pushing beyond what's possible.”
“He's done that Red Bull Car, which is supposed to be insane. But it's a Red Bull car, not a Ferrari. It's about the badge, whether you like it or not,” he added.

Asked about the choice made by Adrian Newey to take a break from designing cars, Montoya said:

“A good excuse more than anything else”

Red Bull technical chief believes Adrian Newey's departure has had an impact on the team

Red Bull Racing's technical director, Pierre Wache, believes that Adrian Newey's departure has impacted the team significantly. However, he reckons that it is a scenario the team was prepared for and that they can still deliver competitive cars. He did concede, though, that they will need to provide proof of it in 2024 and 2025.

The 65-year-old Newey has been seen at the Red Bull pitwall several times this year, with his most recent sighting being in Monaco.

Asked if Adrian Newey's decision to leave came as a surprise, Wache said:

“I think with knowing Adrian… I think everybody knows in this business, Adrian is a big man in this business and maybe the most successful engineer in F1. I think it's a big effect for us, but the team was prepared. It's not like we expect him for 20 years more.”

When asked if Red Bull would miss Adrian Newey, Wache responded to reporters, including Sportskeeda, by saying:

“It's difficult to answer that for sure. It's what we are planning for. It's what we are working for. But the future will tell us after all we are in the competitive environment. As the people say, they are working hard to catch us. We are working hard to stay ahead. Now the team has to, and anyway before it was a team effort to deliver this car. It's not one person that delivers this car.”
“I would say yes, we are prepared to work as a team to deliver a car after if one person leave, it's a shame, but you know, and even more this type of person like Adrian, that is big important on it. But you know, we were prepared for that for sure. And I think it's something we have to prove around the year and next year.”

In recent times, Red Bull has limited Newey's involvement in the recent car as much as they could. The British designer is supposed to have the least involvement in the current RB20 and its development. However, the reality is that the RB20 has evolved in a different direction compared to its dominant predecessors. Some of its shortfalls have led to rivals like Ferrari and McLaren closing up in the drivers and constructors championship.

Quick Links

App download animated image Get the free App now