McLaren shuffle technical staff after Fry departure

2011 F1 season

Lewis Hamilton, Jenson Button, Istanbul, 2010

Lewis Hamilton, Jenson Button, Istanbul, 2010

McLaren has reorganised its engineering staff following the departure of Pat Fry to Ferrari last year.

Tim Goss, who previously alternated leadership of new car design with Fry, now has overall responsibility for developing new cars. He said:

Now I?ve taken on both roles ?ǣ but there?s obviously been some shifting of responsibilities within the team as, clearly, I can?t do the work of two people.

As director of engineering, my role will be to co-ordinate a small team of project engineers who are responsible for the specification, design and development of our cars.
Tim Goss

Paddy Lowe has been promoted from engineering director to become technical director. He said:

It?s great for Neil [Oatley] and me to be joined by Tim as another director on the technical side. With the three of us, we?ll not only be able to more efficiently spread our workload, but, through Tim & me, we?ll also share race attendance.

It?s very important to have senior technical management at the racetrack, because that?s where you score the points, but, equally, if you spend all your time away then you risk overlooking some of the hard work that happens back at the factory.
Paddy Lowe

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14 comments on McLaren shuffle technical staff after Fry departure

  1. Adrian J (@adrian-j) said on 27th January 2011, 10:41

    Keith, any word on when this actually took place – obviously Pat Fry left the team a while ago so I just wonder if these changes have been in place since then…

  2. alexf1man said on 27th January 2011, 11:23

    Like the Ferrari reshuffle a couple of weeks ago.

  3. I wonder what effect the reshuffle will have on the driver front?

    I am hopping not negative and BTW, I think Mr. Whitmarsh has too much functions from FOTA to McLaren and NGOs. Slowly becoming jack of all trade :(

  4. anTONIo said on 27th January 2011, 15:36

    As long as Paddy is in charge the title will be something to dream about…
    Nothing personal but last season showed that even good ideas originated by McLaren were easily surpassed by rivals, even improved.
    At the same time they were moving nowhere in technical sense. Development rate was to slow compared to competitors and we all saw it. Mr. Lowe was making comments like: “We don’t understand Red Bull’s front wing…” It is an outrageous statement for a Director of Engineering.
    Appointing Mr. Lowe to the position of Technical Director is not a wise move.
    The future will show…

    • Scribe (@scribe) said on 27th January 2011, 17:18

      McLaren’s development was very very quick last year, however, there car was an ambitious concept that was difficult to set up and therfore clearly a hard car to understand (thank you Pat Fry) an yet, up till Valencia they soundly thrashed Ferrari in the development race, clear from quali positions in Turkey, Spain and Canada, following on from being slower in Bahrain. Till Silverstone they also kept pace with Redbull. At which point it became clear that there car had a rather obvious design flaw, the diffuser was just too damn big, making it incredibly hard to apply the EBD, previously the cars stiff suspension hadn’t been too much of a problem, but with the EBD they where being thrown off the track by the varying downforce. Still they eventually got it right, an the car was quicker on track then Ferrari at Suzuka and Abu Dhabi.

      By that time however, compensating for the complex nature of their car, an the title escaping post Monza the devlopment was rushed, an not properly sorted till the last race, still McLaren caught up again, an without the bendy wings.

      WHy’d ferrari get the bendy wings first, they’d done it before obvs, the technology got banned, RB exploited a loop whole, Ferrari already knew what was involved.

      Redbull’s advantage was they where evolving an already excellent concept, Ferrari’s advantage was that they’d already spent 6 months desining the new car, an well played both of them.

      Possibly McLaren played a bad hand by not copying Ferrari but they had there reasons, understanding the new regulations on track being the primary. Unfortunatley last year proved that with the new regs getting the basics right then moving on from there works best, radical or extreme ain’t gonna help so much if you can’t set your car up. Hopefully McLaren learn this lesson, it was certainly something they where fantastically good at in 07/08, helping a rookie set up a car to win races.

      • Icthyes (@icthyes) said on 27th January 2011, 23:46

        Correct me if I’m wrong but wasn’t it Ferrari who fell afoul of flexing rear wings during the later Schumacher years?

        • Scribe (@scribe) said on 27th January 2011, 23:53

          Yus, so they had some experiance of the technology, the rules where changed for them. Brawn basically admitted they where stalling the rear wings by flexing them this season, although he added the caveat that there was NOTHING illegal about that at the time.

          So I gues when Ferrari saw Redbull’s wing’s a’flexing it wasn’t to much trouble to fix up some of their own.

    • Mike-e said on 28th January 2011, 4:48

      Mr. Lowe was making comments like: “We don’t understand Red Bull’s front wing…” It is an outrageous statement for a Director of Engineering.

      I read this as….. ‘We don’t understand how this is possible to do legally. They must be using foul play, I know it, you know it….’

      • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 28th January 2011, 9:33

        Yeah, they added the “legally” every time they made that comment.

        Guess they were trying to find some polite way to say “CHEATERS!”, but in the end it made them look like dummies instead.

  5. The edge said on 27th January 2011, 18:54

    I think the reason mclaren was behind last year was due to the working. On a ride bight system they thought redbull had. I read a week or so ago that something ‘interesting’ has been developed for this years car like the f-duct last year to take advantage of new rule changes. Mclaren have now been caught out twice under fry’s direction so perhaps his depature is a blessing. There’s no denying red bull set the pace last year and Nessus a genius but I think mclaren are now used to thinking fully outside the box.personally I can’t wait for the 4th

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