Wolff: Red Bull poaching could be good for Mercedes

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says Red Bull's aggressive Formula 1 engine plans could actually end up being a positive for his team, despite having lost staff to its rival.

Wolff: Red Bull poaching could be good for Mercedes

Red Bull is taking over the Honda power unit project from next year, and is ramping up its facilities in Milton Keynes to prepare an all-new power unit for when new regulations come in for 2025.

It has been on a huge recruitment drive to find the best staff possible, and has lured away several of Mercedes' long-serving staff from its Brixworth engine headquarters.

But while the loss of staff to Red Bull has provided fresh challenges to Mercedes, Wolff is not worried that the German car manufacturer could come out of the situation much weaker.

He thinks Red Bull faces a huge task in making its engine deliver, plus he says F1 will be better off from having another power unit supplier on the grid.

"I find it admirable that Red Bull is taking on that project, there is certainly a Mount Everest to climb," he said.

"Nothing has changed in HPP [Mercedes' engine division]. We have 900 employees, and probably we lose 10 or 15. It's pretty normal and mostly manufacturing staff.

"So from our side, the game plan hasn't changed. I think it's good that we have another possible constructor that comes into the sport, whether it's Red Bull or any other OEM that could be interested in taking over, and that's overall positive.

"I don't see any negativity there, any negative aspect in the situation."

Read Also:

One of the positives that Wolff believes will come from the movement of staff to Red Bull is that it will free up opportunities for some Mercedes' younger engineers to step up.

"It opens up bottlenecks for younger engineers to come up," he said. "They have an opportunity now, and changing the organisation has always opportunities.

"Organisations are dynamic organs and not static. Sometimes you are being pushed in such situations, sometimes you take your own decisions. But overall, you can make it an opportunity rather than a risk."

Red Bull recently announced that it has signed long-serving Mercedes man Ben Hodgkinson to be its new technical director.

A further statement last week announced that five more Mercedes personnel were moving across to take senior positions.

shares
comments

Related video

Alpine's progress almost "too good to be true" - Alonso
Previous article

Alpine's progress almost "too good to be true" - Alonso

Next article

Ocon's future up to himself, Alpine before Mercedes input - Wolff

Ocon's future up to himself, Alpine before Mercedes input - Wolff
Load comments
The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes Prime

The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton...

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Prime

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Prime

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Prime

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Motorsport.com's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer Tim Wright explains.

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021
How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison Prime

How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells Stuart Codling about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him.

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Prime

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as Ben Anderson discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021
The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren Prime

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren

From being lapped by his own teammate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

Formula 1
Nov 26, 2021
The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Prime

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing wind tunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021