Andreas Seidl will begin his role as McLaren F1’s managing director on 1 May, the team have confirmed.
McLaren appointed the 46-year-old German, who used to be the boss of Porsche’s World Endurance Championship team, in January.
“We’re delighted Andreas is able to join the team on 1 May,” said Zak Brown, McLaren Racing chief executive.
“This enables us to continue the momentum of our recovery plan and we’re looking forward to welcoming him.”
Seidl, who worked in F1 for BMW from 2000-09, said: “This is an enormous privilege and challenge. To have an opportunity to contribute to the McLaren legacy is extremely special and inspiring.
“McLaren has the vision, leadership and experience but, most importantly, the people to return to the front, and that will be my absolute focus and mission.”
Why the new role for Seidl?
McLaren decided they needed someone to take direct operational responsibility for the F1 team under Brown and the board of directors.
That person will be Seidl, who is highly regarded for his work with Porsche in the World Endurance Championship.
His appointment ensures that there is now a senior manager with oversight of and sole responsibility for the F1 team and no other distractions.
Brown’s role is not to run the F1 team on a day-to-day basis – as chief executive officer, he has authority over all of McLaren’s racing activities, including the IndyCar programme set up for this season and a potential future entry into the World Endurance Championship.
“Concentrated senior leadership on our F1 programme is an integral part of the long-term strategy of McLaren Racing to expand into other forms of global motorsport over time,” Brown said.
McLaren have won 12 drivers championships, with their last one coming with Lewis Hamilton in 2008, and they finished sixth in the constructors’ championship in 2018 and ninth in 2017.
Their drivers in 2019 are Spain’s former Renault driver Carlos Sainz, 24, and British 19-year-old Lando Norris, competing in Formula 1 for the first season.
The first race of 2019 is in Australia on 17 March and there will also be races held in Bahrain, China and Azerbaijan before Seidl begins his role.