Ron Dennis has ended his involvement with McLaren after 37 years by selling his final shareholding in the team.
McLaren confirmed on Friday that Dennis had sold his stakes in McLaren Technology Group and McLaren Automotive. The two have now come under the control of a new holding company named McLaren Group.
“I am very pleased to have reached agreement with my fellow McLaren shareholders,” said Dennis in a statement. “It represents a fitting end to my time at McLaren and will enable me to focus on my other interests.”
“I have always said that my 37 years at Woking should be considered as a chapter in the McLaren book, and I wish McLaren every success as it takes the story forward.”
Dennis said his “greatest satisfaction” from his time running McLaren was “the Formula One team’s outstanding racing safety record, which is a tribute to the dedication and efforts of hundreds if not thousands of talented and conscientious employees whom I have had the privilege of leading.”
Dennis joined McLaren in 1980 and transformed the fortunes of the team. He led them to 158 grand prix wins and seven constructors’ championship titles. McLaren drivers, including stars of the sport such as Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Niki Lauda, Mika Hakkinen and Lewis Hamilton, took ten world titles between them in the team’s cars.
The 70-year-old was ousted from the team last year following a disagreement at board level which led to the hiring of Zak Brown as executive director.
Dennis said he wishes the team well and “I send my greatest thanks and best wishes to my colleagues in all corners of its business, and at every level of seniority.”
“Truly, they are the best of the best. And, well funded to succeed and grow, and led by an ambitious management team, McLaren is ideally poised to build on the successes that I am so proud to have contributed to during my time leading such a great British group of companies.”
Executive chairman and executive committee principal Shaikh Mohammed bin Essa Al Khalifa praised Dennis’s achievements during his leadership of the team.
“As soon as he had taken over the running of the team in the late autumn of 1980, it was immediately clear that here was a man whose ambition to surpass the achievements of all previous Formula 1 team principals would not be checked,” he said.
“Together with Mansour Ojjeh of TAG Group, whom Ron soon introduced to McLaren and whose support has been invaluable to its success for a third of a century, Ron rewrote the record books in the 1980s and 1990s, winning grands prix and world championships as a matter of apparent routine. But it was not routine: it was in fact the result of a lot of clever thinking and a huge amount of extremely hard work.”
“That ethos remains at McLaren, and I am very proud now to be assuming the position of Executive Chairman, alongside Mansour, my fellow executive committee principal, who will continue to work with me to drive McLaren Group forward to new successes.”
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