Billionaire Red Bull co-founder and F1 team owner Dietrich Mateschitz dies aged 78 after long battle with illness… as Christian Horner pays tribute to ‘incredible man’

  • The head of Red Bull Ditich Mateszitz died after a long illness at the age of 78
  • The Austrian billionaire co-founded Red Bull in the 1980s
  • In his career, he combined an energy drink company with sports franchises

The head of Red Bull Racing and the football club Ditich Mateszitz died at the age of 78 after a long illness.

The Austrian was known for his long-time management of Red Bull after co-founding the energy drink company in the 1980s.

Mateschitz combined the company with his passion for motorsports and other sports as it sponsored many different teams around the world.

His company also bought the Jaguar Formula 1 racing team and transformed it into Red Bull Racing in November 2004, making it one of the strongest teams on the grid.

Plus, Max Verstappen just won the drivers’ championship this season driving a Red Bull car. This is the sixth time that Red Bull has won the title.

Red Bull has also won the Constructors’ Championship four times since the team was formed.

The company also owns the AlphaTauri, which was adapted from the Toro Rosso team in 2016.

Mateschitz was a key player in Red Bull’s entry into football, as he has several teams in his portfolio.

Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschitz has died at the age of 78 after a long illness

Matešyts was also the head of Red Bull Racing, as well as the Red Bull football teams

Bundesliga side RB Leipzig, Austria’s Red Bull Salzburg, MLS franchise New York Red Bulls and Brazilian team Red Bull Bragantino are the biggest clubs to represent the beverage company.

News of Mateszitz’s death reached the F1 paddock and Red Bull staff when they were called to the hospitality area to report what had happened 45 minutes before qualifying for the US Grand Prix in Austin, Texas.

Red Bull Racing boss Christian Horner paid tribute to Matešić when he told Sky Sports: “It’s very, very sad. What a great man – he is few and far between, what he has achieved and what he has done for so many people around the world and in different sports is unparalleled.

Christian Horner said Mateschitz made a difference in Formula 1 before his death

“Many of us should be very grateful to him for the opportunities he provided, the vision he had, the strength of character and the fact that he was never afraid to follow his dreams.

“That’s what he did here in Formula 1, proving that you can make a difference.

“We’re just incredibly grateful for everything he’s done and everything he’s supported us with over the years. So many drivers, so many team members, so many people in this pit lane know him so well.

Red Bull Racing has become one of the best teams in Formula 1 since its creation by Matešić

“As he wanted, now we go into the qualifiers exactly as he would have wanted it to be.

“He was passionate about Formula 1, passionate about the team and our determination is to do everything we can for him today and in the race tomorrow.”

The official F1 account also paid tribute to the Austrian, writing on Twitter: “We are saddened to learn of the death of Dietrich Mateschitz. The Red Bull co-founder made an unforgettable contribution to Formula 1 and leaves behind a lasting legacy.”