REPORT: ‘Unrest’ at Brixworth as Red Bull Snatches Tens of Mercedes F1 Engineers

Published 10/17/2021, 6:08 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Austrian Grand Prix – Red Bull Ring, Spielberg, Styria, Austria – July 2, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton during practice REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger


Mercedes AMG have undeniably had a very rough 2021 F1 season so far, not only having to defend their championship title but also obstruct their engineers from moving to the rival team, Red Bull Racing. And the numbers haven’t just been in ones, but in tens.

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Hence, one might wonder, is this causing Mercedes’ instability with their power unit this season?

Well, yes, according to Auto Motor Und Sport. An anonymous engineer apparently opined that Red Bull’s mass recruitment from Mercedes has led to major unrest within the Brixworth engine factory.

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Formula One F1 – Turkish Grand Prix – Intercity Istanbul Park, Istanbul, Turkey – October 10, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action with Red Bull’s Sergio Perez during the race REUTERS/Murad Sezer

The statement read, “An engineer suggests that the major bloodletting at the Brixworth engine factory may have had an impact. Red Bull has poached employees from Mercedes High-Performance Powertrains in the double-digit range. Something like that always causes unrest.” (Translated via Google Translate)

The Milton Keynes outfit have been on a recruitment spree since they bought the 2022 engine design from their soon-to-exit supplier, Honda. Consequently, Red Bull will be running their own powertrains division from the start of the next season.

Can Mercedes recover from this anytime soon?

Unfortunately, no. Considering there are only 6 races left to go, the time is too short for Mercedes to change things around. Furthermore, all of the engineers have moved on to the 2022 Mercedes project. Hence, all hopes will now land on the lone warrior, Lewis Hamilton.

Red Bull do have the better car at the moment, but the 7-time world champion’s experience could well come into play as we head deeper into the season. The Briton has a history of fending off abundant threats from incredible drivers like Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel, and Felipe Massa over his past championship fights.

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Formula One F1 – Italian Grand Prix – Autodromo Nazionale Monza, Monza, Italy – September 10, 2021 Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas celebrates pole position for the sprint qualifying with Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in second position REUTERS/Massimo Pinca

Therefore, now that the latest entrant to this list is a fairly young driver, Hamilton might be able to handle the hardships thrown at him.

Also, with all that’s left are race weekends in the United States and the middle-east, the latter could play to Mercedes’ strengths; Turkish GP and Bahrain GP being the example. Both the Grand Prix weekends witnessed one of the Mercedes drivers secure the top step.

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So, it wouldn’t be much of a shock if either Hamilton or Bottas continue to deliver such strong results in Qatar, Abu Dhabi, and Saudi Arabia. But, will Max Verstappen charge back at the Brackley outfit? Only time will tell.

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Rohit Kumar

1441 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

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