“Not normal to walk away from a thing you love” – James Allison became the Mercedes Chief Technical Officer after handing over the technical director role to Mike Elliott.
After immense success with the Mercedes F1 team as the technical director, James Allison is now the CTO. His successor is Mike Elliott, who moves on from his role as technology director.
— Varun S (@swiftsambi) June 30, 2021
Asked on the F1 Nation podcast how he feels about moving away from the day-to-day running of the F1 team, Allison termed it a “mixed feeling” as he thoroughly enjoyed the role which brought a lot of success in the form of world titles.
At the same time, he is confident that Elliott will do a good job as the new technical director, and bring in more success. Elliott’s first challenge would be to fight off Red Bull as they seek to win their fifth F1 title this season.
“I’ve got very mixed feelings about it. This is by far and away the best, most exciting and most fulfilling job I’ve had over the arc of my career and I’ve loved every moment of being technical director here over the four seasons prior and the half-season so far.
“And so voluntarily deciding to hand that on to a successor is a strange experience because it’s not normal to walk away from a thing you love.
“But nevertheless, the person who is coming next, Mike, will pick up the baton from me and accelerate away with it. He will bring to it a vigour and a dedication I’m sure will see the team very well served. His standard of engineering judgement and his values and behaviours as a leader are top drawer.
“There’s a great deal of pleasure to see Mike have his chance and to know the team will be well served under him, and a great deal of pleasure to know the handover is happening in a nice, organised way and where I can feel I’m stepping away with the team in good shape – stepping away from the technical directing that is.
“As I do so, I can turn my thoughts to my new challenge, to my new role, where I hope to continue to be helpful and useful but where the nature of the role will be less immediate, less sort of visceral than the role of technical director.”