VW motorsport director Capito moves to McLaren

Thu Jan 14, 2016 10:04am EST
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LONDON (Reuters) - Volkswagen motorsport director Jost Capito has been appointed chief executive of McLaren Racing as the Honda-powered Formula One team seek to rejoin the frontrunners after their worst ever season.

The 57-year-old German replaces Jonathan Neale who has been handed a wider remit as chief operating officer of the parent McLaren Technology Group, McLaren said in a statement on Thursday.

Volkswagen said in a separate statement that Capito would leave 'during the course of the year' and continue to perform his duties of Motorsport Director until a successor had been appointed.

McLaren do not have an officially designated team principal, with Frenchman Eric Boullier effectively carrying out much of the role as hands-on racing director and remaining in that position.

Ron Dennis, a shareholder and former principal, remains executive chairman and chief executive of the McLaren Technology Group.

Capito has a strong track record in motorsport and has led Volkswagen's multiple title-winning world rally championship team since 2012, winning 34 of 39 events during his tenure.

He has also worked for Ford, who won world rally championships under his leadership, BMW and the Sauber Formula One team.

"I first approached Jost last summer," Dennis said in a statement. "He is an extremely impressive, competitive and ambitious individual, who comes to us with a very wide range of automotive and motorsport experience.

"I am certain that he will work extremely well with Eric and all at McLaren Racing, building on the very good work they have already done to take the McLaren-Honda program forward towards grand prix victories and world championship successes."   Continued...

Formula One - F1 - Russian Grand Prix 2015 - Sochi Autodrom, Sochi, Russia - 10/10/15
Jenson Button of McLaren during qualifying
Mandatory Credit: Action Images / Hoch Zwei