Sam Michael to join McLaren

McLaren has announced that Sam Michael will join the team as Sporting Director in 2012.

The Australian, currently the technical director of Williams, will join McLaren after spending over ten years with Williams. His time with theWokingbased team saw them return to their standing as one of Formula 1’s leading teams but recent years have been mostly disappointing since the loss of factory BMW engines.

In April Williams confirmed that they were evaluating their options with regard to technical staff and Michael’s departure after the Korean Grand Prix was confirmed. The team has now said that Michael will end his tenure as Technical Director after next weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix.

McLaren are keen to stem the tide of Red Bull dominance and the signing of Michael shows that the team are eager to move forward once again with Michael set to take on a lot of the responsibility of the development and management of the team’s race weekend.

This has arguably been a weakness for the squad since Davie Ryan was fired following the scandal of the team lying to race stewards following the Australian Grand Prix in 2009. Michael will bring the same level of experience and expertise that Ryan offered McLaren and this is sure to strengthen the team in the coming years.

“I’m extremely excited to be joining Vodafone McLaren Mercedes,” said Michael when asked about his decision to join the team.

“Being a racer my whole life, I know that McLaren is one of the all-time greats of Formula 1. I already know and respect many of the team’s senior technical management figures, and becoming a member of that excellent working unit was one of the prime attractions of this new position.”

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