“Humble” Seidl unlocking potential in McLaren’s staff – Brown

2021 F1 season

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McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown says he is impressed by the team principal Andreas Seidl’s performance in the role as the team continued their recent gains into 2021.

Seidl was one of Brown’s first major appointments after he took control of the team. The former Porsche LMP1 chief is now in his third season running McLaren’s F1 team.

Last year McLaren finished third in championship, their best result since 2012. After switching to Mercedes power units over the off-season, they have started 2021 in event better shape.

McLaren scored 41 points over the first two races of the new season – two more than last year – and have been closer to the leading terms in outright pace.

While Brown heads up McLaren’s Racing division, Seidl has day-to-day responsibility for running the F1 team. Brown said he is consistently impressed by job Seidl is doing.

“It still impresses me how focussed he is, how humble he is,” Brown told RaceFans in an exclusive interview. “He kind of lets the results speak for themself.

“He’s focussed on creating the right team culture and empowers people. He delegates and he empowers his people.

“Some people might think of that type of personality as a micro-manager. He knows exactly what he wants, he sets clear goals and objectives for the individual people within his team. But he empowers them to do it and much like I do with him, he does with his people, he lets them make decisions and he only steps in if he really feels he needs to.”

Seidl understands the value of giving staff freedom to do their jobs, said Brown.

“You’ve hired them to do a job, you can’t then be micromanaging them. You hire them to do a job and if they don’t, then you have a conversation. But you can’t get in there and meddle because then you frustrate them.

“So I think look at Andreas and I, we’ve got an outstanding working relationship. He knows my sandbox, I know his sandbox, and we work together brilliantly.”

Read our in-depth exclusive interview with McLaren’s Zak Brown in the new edition of the RacingLines column coming today on RaceFans

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3 comments on ““Humble” Seidl unlocking potential in McLaren’s staff – Brown”

  1. Dan Rooke (@geekzilla9000)
    28th April 2021, 8:40

    Sadly the reports from and about McLaren a few years ago seemed to highlight the toxic atmosphere there. Zak and Seidl seem to have done a brilliant job of changing that. McLaren now look like a big team with flash facilities, but with the humble identity of a small outfit with that personal touch. Whether that’s true whether it’s just optics – they are getting some excellent results there.

    I love seeing the garage crew cheering/high-fiving/hugging (when it was permitted) when they get results. It seems so much more healthy than the quite sterile Ferrari staff who are no doubt very passionate, but also very “corporate”, at a senior level anyway. Ferrari may have been the better team for the last few years (2020 being the exception), but I know which garage I’d rather be sat in!

    1. This is exactly the reason why i can see McLaren challenge at the sharp end next year and not Aston Martin or Alpine. They already have the hard working attitude that Mercedes has dominated the sport with and have been on an unbroken upward trajectory since the beginning of 2019.

  2. IMHO I would say Seidl’s stock among the current team principals is right at the very top.

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