McLaren “became a bit Darth Vader”- Ross Brawn compares McLaren’s earlier predicaments to a Star Wars character, cites financial struggles.
McLaren has taken an incredible lead in comparison to where they were a couple of years ago. The Britain based team once carried an almost a sponsor-less chassis for a year.
Moreover, they were no longer seen as a team with pace and even finished P9 once. But now those days are of past, Ross Brawn, McLaren’s current boss, reminisce the days of past.
“What I walked into was a team very much on the decline in almost every aspect,” Brown told Autosport. “Sponsorship from the days of Vodafone, Johnnie Walker, GSK and ExxonMobil was down to almost a blank car.”
“Race results, the facts are the facts: we were ninth in the championship. That then manifested itself into a very unhappy workforce, so when you walked around the shop, heads were down, not up.”
“I don’t think it’s any one person’s fault, and there’s not a blame game here. But you had a revolving door of leadership, starting at the top. You had a well-documented and publicised shareholder battle.”
“That just manifested itself into a very unhealthy environment. What I tried to do is get the right people in the right place, simplify the organisation, focus the organisation, and try and be a warmer organisation.”
McLaren became a bit Darth Vader.
Simplifying his point, Brawn said that he found McLaren’s situation bit like Darth Vader and instead wanted to overturn into Luke Skywalker.
“I’ve always kind of felt like McLaren is Star Wars, but we became a bit Darth Vader, and I think we needed to be a bit more Luke Skywalker,” Brown said.
“So, cool, Star Wars, but we really tried to turn the attention of the team and the brand into what do people want out of McLaren? [Such as] changing the car to papaya, because that’s what the fans want.”
“By getting I think the right people in the right place, focusing the organisation, and bringing some energy and change, we’re now starting to see that all working.”