Inside the mind of Adrian Newey: the F1 design guru opens up | Richard Williams

In How to Make a Car, the Red Bull’s chief technical officer is refreshingly honest on Ayrton Senna, his design process and the aim of ‘disruptive technology’

As a Pink Floyd-loving public schoolboy in the mid-1970s, Adrian Newey found a clever way around his headmaster’s ban on platform-soled shoes. The relevant rule stipulated that if you could pass a penny on its end between the ground and the sole of the shoe, it was illegal. Newey reacted by glueing a strip of aluminium between the heel and the sole, thus reducing the gap while maintaining the desired height of the shoes. “No prizes for spotting the connection between that and what I do now,” the technical chief of the Red Bull grand prix team writes in his autobiography.

What Newey does now is find ways around the most complex set of rules ever devised to control a sport: the Formula One technical regulations. Each time they are rewritten, Newey sits down to decide how he can make them work to his advantage, ignoring what the rules were intended to do and concentrating instead on what their wording will allow him to get away with.

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