Monday, May 27, 2024
Home F1 News Boullier out at McLaren; Gil de Ferran in

Boullier out at McLaren; Gil de Ferran in

Photo by:

Perhaps the old notion that if a team is performing poorly, you don’t fire the entire team, you part ways with the coach is applicable today…maybe it’s not. Regardless, Eric Boullier has left McLaren as the Race Director and McLaren boss Zak Brown has taken this opportunity to simplify the leadership team.

These changes may impact the team in a positive way but just what it can do for the current car and the struggles it has remains to be seen. Gil de Ferran hasn’t been in F1 for quite a while (BAR Honda) but he’s been consulting with McLaren for a while on the young driver program.

The recent spate of stories in the press about mutiny, disgruntled and demoralized employees has added to the drama but something tells me that the issues derive at the boardroom level and ownership, not just Eric Boullier. This team has been in tumult for some time now and perhaps this change can re-energize them. I do hope they gave Eric the box of Freddo’s on his way out the door. It’s the least they could do.


Restructure of racing operations begin process of change

McLaren Racing today announced a leadership restructure of its racing operations, with immediate effect.

McLaren Racing Chief Executive Zak Brown yesterday accepted Eric Boullier’s resignation from his position as Racing Director. He also announced a simplified technical leadership team.

Simon Roberts, COO of McLaren Racing, will oversee production, engineering and logistics. Andrea Stella is appointed Performance Director, responsible for trackside operations. Gil de Ferran takes up the new role of Sporting Director, to maximise the effectiveness of the team’s racing package.

These changes are the beginning of a comprehensive programme of positive changes to the technical leadership of McLaren’s racing organisation. The team will invest to retain and attract the best talent, internally and externally, to return McLaren Racing to the front of the grid.

Zak Brown, CEO, McLaren Racing, said:

“The performance of the MCL33 in 2018 has not met the expectations of anyone at McLaren, especially our loyal fans. This is not the fault of the hundreds of committed and hard-working men and women at McLaren.

“The causes are systemic and structural, which require major change from within. With today’s announcement, we start to address those issues head on and take the first step on our road to recovery.

“I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the entire team to thank Eric for his service and contribution to McLaren and wish him well in his future endeavours.”

Eric Boullier said:

“I am very proud to have worked with such a brilliant team over the past four years, but I recognise now is the right time for me to step down. I want to wish everyone at McLaren the best for the remainder of the season and for the future.”

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

The Captain

So lets see if I have this right. They’ve decided to simplify management by… replacing one manager with three??? That’s the most McLaren thing I’ve heard.


Sounds like they are transitioning to a more traditional hierarchal structure. I think this is the way to go, this is after all an industry which is judged on merit. And like it or not, somebody needs to be responsible and more importantly, somebody needs to be the one to lead when the times get rough. Leading by committee has seldom worked.

saviour ativala

When Brown times comes they will replace him with six.


At this point, McLaren should start preparing for the next iteration of the Formula. The turbo hybrid era has been a complete wash. Swapping out a few people isn’t going to miraculously get them to compete with the top teams. It’s a shame for Alonso. I am sad to say that we will probably never see him truly competing in this formula nor for a F1 championship again.

Richard L Bunce

This was 200 plus years in the making… British team fires Frenchman on July 4th… revenge is best served cold… very cold.


Look, I don’t know if McLaren’s troubles are Boo-yah!!!’s fault or not. But, and we tend to forget this, McLaren is HISTORIC. Second only to Ferrari, this is a team that was a goliath in the sport. But when such a team comes crashing down, whether it’s logical, fair, morally correct or not, somebody has to be sacrificed. If I was them (and I understand they could never do this) I would split with the road car company fully and I would call up Ron Dennis and see if he’s busy……

Meine Postma

McLaren’s mistake was to let Newey go in the first place, that is when their troubles began.
Ron Dennis should have made him partner.

Meine Postma

I think Ronny D. is busy building an army.

Tom Firth

This was rather predictable, was it not?

I’m guessing here but De Ferran’s appointment probably means the Indycar programme is going to see the light of day?


Rather interesting thought there. Let’s see if that happens (yes, I remember de Ferran’s time in Indy / CART).

Meine Postma

Nope, the IndyCar programme will also be canceled.
And my gut feeling is that Zak B. should also worry about his job.


Now, he’s the real question: Did Boullier depart due to failure to lead or was it due to something that he saw that he didn’t like?


I thought he resigned because he didn’t have the authority to make the changes he saw necessary to improve the team.
He wasn’t fired, he got frustrated with the bureaucracy of the team’s current management structure, and so resigned.


Matrix management would seem to be the perfect environment for rapid development of matrix sandbagging among staff in a high pressure environment. What a remarkably stupid idea. Seems to me the resultant toxic tangle can only be eliminated by heads rolling. Many more heads than one, because those who are left have no way of somehow justifying their own past performance, and McLaren doesn’t seem like a bunch to have a “truth and reconciliation” approach. And what they’re left with is surely a level of confusion and underperformance that is well beyond what they expect even now. (again with aggressive… Read more »

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x