The McLaren Technology Group confirmed on Thursday that they have appointed Volkswagen Motorsport boss Jost Capito as the new CEO of the McLaren Honda Formula One team replacing Jonathan Neale who was in the role on an interim basis having replaced Martin Whitmarsh.
Neale who has held senior management roles with McLaren for the last 15 years has been appointed Chief Operating Officer of the McLaren Technology Group.
The news comes as Carlos Sainz competing in a factory VW buggy was forced to retire from the lead of the DAKAR rally on Thursday. Speaking about Capito’s appointment, McLaren Chairman Ron Dennis commented by saying:
I first approached Jost last summer, He is an extremely impressive, competitive and ambitious individual, who comes to us with a very wide range of automotive and motorsport experience, encompassing senior positions at BMW, Porsche, Ford, Sauber and, since 2012, Volkswagen, leading the latter company’s World Rally Championship team to consecutive world titles in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Dennis went on to say:
From a motorsport perspective he has experience in not only the World Rally Championship but also Sports Cars, Touring Cars, Motorcycle Racing and Formula One, about which he is hugely knowledgeable and infectiously passionate. I am therefore delighted to welcome Jost to McLaren, and 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 programme forward towards grand prix victories and world championship successes.
The reshuffle means that both Neale and Capito will report directly to Dennis who remains as Chairman of the McLaren Technology Group. Capito will work alongside McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier who role within the team remains unchanged.