Back to Top


Cost cap makes it harder to keep top talent – Horner

Cost cap makes it harder to keep top talent – Horner

Cost cap makes it harder to keep top talent - Horner

The cost cap restrictions are making it harder for top teams to keep certain talents from being enticed elsewhere, admits Red Bull team principal Christian Horner.

Red Bull’s chief engineering officer Rob Marshall (pictured top, center) will join McLaren at the start of 2024, taking on the role of technical director of engineering and design. McLaren also recently signed Ferrari’s David Sanchez while Aston Martin has attracted a number of senior personnel in recent seasons, something Horner says is a direct result of the cost cap making it tougher to keep hold of team members.

“Yeah, of course it does,” Horner said. “You can’t carry anybody within the team, and I think everybody has to warrant their place within the cap. Rob was focused on other projects in recent years. The offer that McLaren made is probably half their cap! So you can’t blame him for wanting to go and do that.”

And Horner admits Marshall will be missed by Red Bull even though he’d moved away from a full-time Formula 1 focus, and that the team felt it owed him a positive send-off after so long in Milton Keynes.

“Rob has been with us for 17 years, and he’s been an instrumental player in the building of Red Bull Racing. He was able to accommodate things mechanically within the car like batteries inside the gearbox with the KERS cars back in the 2009, ’10, ’11, ’12, ’13 era. He played a significant role within the team. But over recent years, he’s moved onto other projects and hasn’t been on the mainstream of Formula 1.

“After 17 years, he had an offer – a significant offer – from McLaren. And whilst he still had a period of time left on his contract, he was keen to go back into Formula 1. And so we came to an agreement with him and negotiated a deal with Zak (Brown) that worked for everybody.

“So we did a little thing for him at the last debrief, where usually somebody leaves the team, we tell them to f*** off! With Rob, it’s a little bit different. He’s a good guy. He’s just going onto a new challenge. It’s a little bit like Manchester United. If you look at their team and how it evolved over a period of time, Eric Cantona still wasn’t playing 17 years later.”

* This article was originally published here