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Brown has five-year plan for McLaren

NEWS STORY
30/12/2018

Hard to believe, but it is now over six years since a McLaren driver stood atop an F1 podium - Jenson Button doing the honours in Brazil in 2012.

Since that time the Woking outfit has seen many changes, not least the 'departure' of Ron Dennis, two changes of engine partner, and the return, and subsequent 'departure' of Fernando Alonso.

Like Williams, McLaren is currently going through one of the worst periods in its long history, but in his determination to turn things around, Zak Brown has revealed that he has out-lined his vision for the legendary Woking team, a five-year plan that will take it back to winning races and titles.

"I have just presented a five-year plan, and within that plan, we think we have a journey to get back to winning races," he says, according to ESPN, "and then once you're winning races, you're competing for the championship."

However, contrary to the attitude of Ron Dennis, Brown is seeking assistance from the sport's powers-that-be, like Williams, relying on changes to the regulations and prize money allocation.

"I think it's critical that Liberty makes changes to the sport because, right now, the way the sport is going, it's difficult for more than two or three teams to compete for the championship," he admits, "so I think there are things that are out of our control, but hopefully we can influence that need to change for multiple teams to be able to win races and compete for the championship.

"We have laid out a journey and investment, a road to recovery that sees us getting back to the front of the grid in that timeline," he adds. "But I think we want to stay away from making predictions. We know that it hasn't been pretty for the last couple of years, so we don't want to make that mistake again.

"I would say our expectation is that we will continue to make a step forward - we had 15 (grid penalties in 2018) as opposed to a few hundred - so this year was a step forward, although not the step forward we had hoped to make.

"So our expectations are that we are going to continue that journey in 2019, but I want to stop short of saying where that will be in the Constructors' Championship. I know where I hope to be, but I don't know where we will be until we hit the ground running."

The Woking team features an all-new line-up in 2019, Carlos Sainz being joined by McLaren protege Lando Norris. However, if nothing else, 2018 revealed that even with a race-winning Renault engine on-board the chassis was nowhere near as good as needed, which raises the question as to whether the new drivers will be able to develop the car sufficiently.

Though he is off to pastures new, Fernando Alonso is still in the mix, and Brown has admitted that the Spaniard is likely to test the 2019 car at some point.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by george, 01/01/2019 5:19

"The Chinese and the Russians do that also, works great there. "

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2. Posted by NS Biker, 01/01/2019 2:21

"It would be interesting to get Ron Dennis's take on the whole idea of "A Five Year Plan". Not that I expect it would pass the etiquette test with the moderator.
Thomas1 is right, five years is an eternity in F1. New rules, new people, new tyres, new science ... and that is only 3 years away.
"

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3. Posted by Mark, 31/12/2018 16:59

"Five year plans always worked out well for the Soviet planned economy, didn't they? Oh, wait..."

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4. Posted by vins0n, 31/12/2018 16:47

"A five year plan is what you have when you've run out of ideas. Someone needs to take away Zak's corporate management handbook and kick him down the road."

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5. Posted by chimmal, 31/12/2018 14:57

"Greetings
I worked as an engine builder at McLaren when they won there first Formula One World Championship in 1974 and again after the roll on effect 2 seasons later with James Hunt I believe I am right in saying that they only one won one Grand Prix in 11 years after that!!! so there could be some time to wait for their next World Championship Title!! Its very difficult to stay on top in any sport you need a very sound experienced team and top management to achieve that and it would appear at this point McLaren has neither!!! Alonso is a very skilled and talented driver but they managed to make him look like an unskilled Turkey!!! I would like to see them turn it around at some point in the future "

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6. Posted by Thomas1, 30/12/2018 20:05

"Five year Development time is an eternity in F1 minutes. Not more than 3
years for a Championship contender! I want to see Mc-F1 to win podiums
next year. Their main problem is their chassis not tuned to the extreme with
Renault engine and integration for less vibration and hence long-term reliability
of new stressed components because of the Renault hybrid powerplant and gear box layouts.
The benchmark they should look for is the outgoing Red Bull F1 racer. Any fair external help should be used for a winning combination! If Sir Adrian or his disciples' services are available, they should accommodate
them in their team! "Winning is Everything" should be the mindset before the season starts!

If McLaren has extra cash to invest, they should put a Renault F1 Hybrid engine in the McLaren
supercar and beat the Red Bull racer in 2019 Le Mans racing! Since F1 engines are durable now, I will go
for a Le Mans racing in one with some strengthened parts and transmission. This will be a good
publicity to sell lots of McLaren hyper cars!
Falling into a pit is human but climbing out of the pit but not digging deeper is Leadership!
Good Luck and wishing them a Winning New Year!"

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7. Posted by estoril85, 30/12/2018 19:00

"And when the 5 year plan isn't working ......a new 5 year plan! McLaren used to be a racing team!"

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8. Posted by Yeyox02, 30/12/2018 17:49

"I suspect that in five years F1 will not longer exist."

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9. Posted by Lapps, 30/12/2018 12:40

"I suspect McLaren has a one year plan for Zak!"

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10. Posted by Agrajag, 30/12/2018 10:24

"If McLaren were to employ Baldrick or Theresa May they’d come up with a better plan than Zak can."

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