Formula 1 Racing

Wolff should be more worried than me after losing 220 F1 staff to Red Bull

Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO, Mercedes-AMG F1 Team

Over the Miami Grand Prix weekend, it emerged several key Red Bull staff members, including long-time sporting manager Jonathan Wheatley, have been the subject of interest from Red Bull’s competitors.

McLaren F1 CEO Zak Brown said his outfit had seen “an increase in CVs coming our way from the team”, suspecting that legendary designer Adrian Newey won’t be the last domino to fall in the wake of Red Bull’s “destabilising” rift between the Austrian and Thai side of the business.

Team boss Horner said he was not concerned by the rumours about some of his most senior team members, pointing out that his Red Bull Powertrains division poached over 200 people from Mercedes’ HPP engine programme.

“I don’t have any concern of the strength in depth. Of course, there is always going to be movement between teams,” Horner said.

“I don’t know how many people we or RB have employed from McLaren this year. Mercedes, we have taken 220 people out of HPP into Red Bull Powertrains.

“So, when we are talking about losing people, I would be a bit more worried about the 220 than maybe one or two CVs.”

Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO, Mercedes-AMG F1 Team

Photo by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images

Team boss Horner said it was “inevitable” that Brown and his Mercedes counterpart Toto Wolff would stir things up through the media.

“I think it is inevitable. The two candidates involved, they talk a lot, “Horner said.

“But I am not going to get sucked into a tit-for-tat. I would be more focused on Toto’s own issues that he has.”

Red Bull insisted some of its CVs making it to other teams is part of the usual contract renewal cycle, with Wheatley understood to be out of contract soon and having long held an interest in becoming a team principal if such an opportunity were to open up somewhere. understands the team has recently extended the contracts of many other senior employees, including head of aerodynamics Enrico Balbo and head of performance engineering Ben Waterhouse.

Earlier this year, it also tied down technical director Pierre Wache to another long-term deal.

Additional reporting by Ronald Vording

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