Top signing: Red Bull hires an ex-Mercedes engineer to head its Formula 1 engine division

Red Bull has revealed that it has hired former Mercedes engineer Ben Hodgkinson as technical director for its Formula 1 engine division.

Red Bull’s current engine partners, Honda, will be exiting Formula 1 at the end of this year. This has prompted the Milton Keynes-based outfit to create Red Bull Powertrains where it will develop all its future power units.

Hodgkinson is renowned for building engines for the World Rally Championship after which he joined Ilmor Racing Engines, now known as Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains.

“We are delighted to welcome Ben to Red Bull Powertrains as Technical Director,” Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said. 

“He comes to this hugely exciting project as a proven race winner and as an innovator capable of leading a like-minded team of highly skilled engineers.

“When Red Bull announced the creation of Red Bull Powertrains it was also announcing a new phase of the company’s ambition in Formula One – to bring every aspect of car design in-house and to put our destiny in our own hands.

“The ultimate expression of that is the development of a Red Bull power unit to meet the next generation of Formula One engine regulations.

“Ben’s appointment signals our long-term intent and we will support him and his team with every available resource required in order to succeed.”

Red Bull has been clear about the fact that it will build its own engines for the upcoming power unit regulations in 2025. Hodgkinson’s role will be to develop Red Bull’s inaugural power unit.

“I’m extremely excited to be joining Red Bull Powertrains as Technical Director.” said Hodgkinson in an interview.

“It was not easy to make the decision to leave HPP after almost 20 years but the opportunity to take on such a far-reaching and important project is a great honour.

“Red Bull is a serious player in Formula One and have been our biggest rival in the hybrid era, so I’m looking forward to seeing what we can achieve together in this new phase of the company’s journey.”

Do you think Hodgkinson joining Red Bull will pose a threat to Mercedes? Let us know in the comment below!

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