Ferrari made an “absurd offer” to gain the services of Red Bull design maestro Adrian Newey before his decision to step back from Formula One, according to Helmut Marko.
Red Bull confirmed ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix that Newey, the chief designer of the cars that have taken the Milton Keynes based-team to four consecutive drivers’ and constructors’ titles since 2010, would be scaling back his F1 efforts to pursue other challenges within the Red Bull organisation, despite a reported approach from Ferrari.
Yet, despite a series of denials to the contrary from Ferrari, Helmut Marko, Red Bull’s motorsport advisor, has revealed that the Scuderia actively pursued Newey ahead of his decision to turn his attention away from F1, offering the Englishman a lucrative financial deal as well as increased responsibilities within the team.
“We had a long talk with Adrian,” Marko told Servus TV ahead of the Austrian Grand Prix. “Ferrari made him an absurd offer, not only on the financial side but also on what his responsibilities would be.”
But as Marko confirmed, Red Bull countered any outside interest by offering Newey a new avenue to pursue a series of fresh challenges with Red Bull Technology, with the Austrian adding that the company simply did not want to lose him.
“We didn’t want to lose him,” he said. “That’s why we created a situation where he can work on other projects.”
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