Back in February, Red Bull had announced that it would be taking over the production of its power units from Honda by the end of the year. The outfit plans to move its engine operations in-house before the next rules cycle in 2025.
As a result, Red Bull has been involved in a hiring spree for its engine division. The outfit has even managed to hire Mercedes’ head of mechanical engineering Ben Hodgkinson.
On Thursday, Red Bull further announced that it has signed another five staff members from Mercedes for its new powertrains division.
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen seems to think that this movement of staff from Mercedes to Red Bull is “interesting” but “normal”. He believes that the staff are always on the lookout for fresh challenges after being a part of one team for a long time.
“When a team has been so dominant for such a long time, you will try to get those kinds of people,” Verstappen said.
“But also I think it’s an interesting new project to be part of, from our side. When people are in the same place for a long time, I think sometimes they want to seek new challenges.
“I think that’s understandable.”
Even though Red Bull has not commented on working with an external manufacturer, it is currently looking to produce the units itself.
When Verstappen was asked about his thoughts on the new units, he mentioned that they were “great to see”.
“Of course we talk about it within the team and it’s a very exciting future, where of course I want to want to be part of it,” Verstappen said. “We’ll see of course where it leads up to.”
Verstappen’s rival and Mercedes driver, Lewis Hamilton was not surprised with his rival team hiring Mercedes’ staff.
“It’s not something that I [put much time] particularly towards,” he said. “There’s obviously all this that’s in the background and I think I’ve got the best ally with Toto [Wolff, Mercedes motorsport boss], who will be working to manage it in the best way possible.
“Without doubt, every individual that’s in our team is amazing and it’s not a surprise that everybody will want them. We’ve had a lot of success together.
“If there are people that have moved on, I wish them all the best. We all have to go through our own journeys and make our own decisions, which are right for us. But this is a huge team – it’s a big team and it’s not about one individual. Or even five. It’s about a collective.
“And we’ve got an amazing collective group of people that still remains solid and focused on winning this championship.”
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