Wolff: Red Bull approached 100 Mercedes F1 engine staff

Toto Wolff says Red Bull approached around 100 Mercedes staff over a move to its new Formula 1 engine division after announcing a raft of recent signings.

Wolff: Red Bull approached 100 Mercedes F1 engine staff

Red Bull revealed in February that it would be forming its own power unit arm, known as Red Bull Powertrains, that would take over the existing Honda engine IP upon the Japanese manufacturer’s F1 exit at the end of the year.

Red Bull is making plans to produce and develop its own power unit in-house upon the next generation of engines in 2025, led by technical director Ben Hodgkinson, who will join from Mercedes High Performance Powertrains.

A further five Mercedes staff members were named on Thursday as new signings for Red Bull Powertrains, with their moves coming against the backdrop of the two teams fighting for this year’s world championship.

Mercedes F1 boss Wolff said he felt no frustration over the moves, adding it was “pretty obvious” where the talent would lie for an engine division being established in the UK.

“If you want to set up an engine factory in the UK, there is only one, and that is us,” Wolff said on Sky Sports F1.

“We have 900 or so employees there, and if we are fishing out 15 of these or so, that’s pretty normal.

“But they went mainly after manufacturing staff, so it’s not really performance. I guess they want to build up the company.

“But credit to the project, it’s a Mount Everest to climb. I’d like to have a fight with Red Bull power units.”

Wolff went on to reveal that Red Bull has “in all approached 100 people or so, and they got 15 maybe.”

Read Also:

Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko was quoted in the German press recently saying that Mercedes was doubling the salary of staff members who turned down a move.

Asked if such an offer was the only way to counter the approaches, Wolff replied: “Doubling the salaries is one thing, but if you triple them, at a certain stage, you’re not going to compete any more, even for loyal people.

“But it is what it is. I respect everybody that wants to defend his business or build his business, and the retaliation time has not yet come.”

Red Bull F1 boss Christian Horner said earlier on Friday that it was an “inevitability” Mercedes staff would be approached given the proximity of the team to its rival’s engine headquarters.

shares
comments

Related video

Spanish GP: Hamilton tops FP2 from Bottas, Leclerc
Previous article

Spanish GP: Hamilton tops FP2 from Bottas, Leclerc

Next article

Hamilton 'amazed' by McLaren, Ferrari F1 progress

Hamilton 'amazed' by McLaren, Ferrari F1 progress
Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team Prime

Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team

On Tuesday, Red Bull laid out its plans to develop and build a new hypercar - the RB17 - penned by Adrian Newey. As the project itself sates Newey as a creative outlet, it also offers Red Bull's Formula 1 team a number of new and exciting avenues to pursue.

What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone Prime

What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone

OPINION: The British Grand Prix is a home event for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, with their Mercedes team based just a few miles away too. But there’s another reason why the Silver Arrows squad is eager to arrive at Silverstone this weekend, which may help it fix its remaining problems with its 2022 Formula 1 challenger .

Inside AlphaTauri’s Faenza F1 factory Prime

Inside AlphaTauri’s Faenza F1 factory

AlphaTauri’s mission in F1 is to sell clothes and train young drivers rather than win the championship – but you still need a cutting-edge factory to do that. Team boss Franz Tost takes GP Racing’s Oleg Karpov on a guided tour of a facility that’s continuing to grow.

Formula 1
Jun 26, 2022
Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons: Villeneuve and Leclerc Prime

Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons: Villeneuve and Leclerc

Gilles Villeneuve's exploits behind the wheel of a Ferrari made him a legend to the tifosi, even 40 years after his death. The team's current Formula 1 star Charles Leclerc enjoys a similar status, and recently got behind the wheel of a very special car from the French-Canadian’s career.

Formula 1
Jun 24, 2022
How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock Prime

How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock

Porpoising has become the key talking point during the 2022 Formula 1 season, as teams battle to come to terms with it. An FIA technical directive ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix and a second stay appearing on the Mercedes cars only served to create a bigger debate and raise tensions further

Formula 1
Jun 23, 2022
Does Max Verstappen have any weaknesses left? Prime

Does Max Verstappen have any weaknesses left?

Having extended his Formula 1 points lead with victory in Canada, Max Verstappen has raised his game further following his 2021 title triumph. Even on the days where Red Bull appears to be second best to Ferrari, Verstappen is getting the most out of the car in each race. So, does he have any weaknesses that his title rivals can exploit?

Formula 1
Jun 22, 2022
How F1's future fuels can shape the automotive sector Prime

How F1's future fuels can shape the automotive sector

In 2026, Formula 1 plans to make the switch to a fully sustainable fuel, as the greater automotive world considers its own alternative propulsion methods. Biogasoline and e-fuels both have merit as 'drop-in' fuels but, equally, both have their shortcomings...

Formula 1
Jun 21, 2022
The breakthrough behind Sainz's best weekend of F1 2022 so far Prime

The breakthrough behind Sainz's best weekend of F1 2022 so far

OPINION: Carlos Sainz came close to winning in Monaco but needed that race’s specific circumstances for his shot at a maiden Formula 1 victory to appear. Last weekend in Canada, he led the line for Ferrari in Charles Leclerc’s absence from the front. And there’s a key reason why Sainz has turned his 2022 form around

Formula 1
Jun 21, 2022