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Is it time for Ron Dennis to step down and let Martin Witmarsh take over?


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Poll: Is it time for Ron Dennis to step down and let Martin Witmarsh take over? (244 member(s) have cast votes)

  1. Yes (94 votes [38.52%])

    Percentage of vote: 38.52%

  2. No (150 votes [61.48%])

    Percentage of vote: 61.48%

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#1 SCHUEYFAN

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 15:17

Now that the dust is settling on the 2007 season, I think it's a good time for Ron to bow out (not so gracefully) after he managed to turn a potential dream season for McLaren into an utter debacle. If the tables were turned and the mirror image happened under Jean Todt, I would expect no less. Your thoughts?

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#2 giacomo

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 15:23

Yeah Whitmarsh. The guy who refused to take note of suspect documents handed to him by a subordinate instead of doing his job by finding out the origin of those documents and stop the whole thing that finally emerged into being a major desaster in every respect for his company.

#3 Sébastien

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 15:32

Yes Ron Dennis should be replaced but NOT necessarily by Martin Whitmarsh.
I think that Mercedes should take full control of McLaren and appoint more competent management.

#4 HaPe

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 15:33

Hmm ... I cannot decide on that.
Its like being between a rock and a hard place. :rolleyes:

#5 SCHUEYFAN

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 15:35

I listed Whitmarsh since he is number two. If they were to appoint someone other than Whitmarsh then you know the Mercedes board has no confidence at all in the current management. It's logical to appoint him since anything less is a massive vote of non confidence, unless of course they clean house completely....

#6 le chat noir

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 16:15

Its up to Mansour, not Mercedes anyway. Well, they both need to agree, and Mansour won't unless Ron is ready to. So its up to Ron.

#7 Tenmantaylor

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 16:24

I cant see Ron stepping aside in the next two seasons. He still has a large share in the company (30%) so has alot of clout.

Some of the things that happened this season with McLaren have made me think for the first time that Ron should change his ways.

#8 race addicted

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 16:29

Why do you choose to set the tone like that? "wRong" is just childish and you risk putting off people that could otherwise contribute to the discussion.

....

No, it's not time for Ron Dennis to hand things over to Whitmarsh, even if he has in the last few interviews been more willing to talk about when he'd want to toss in the towel. Clearly - and rightly so, as he's worked tremendously hard for so long - cause afterall he is 60(?), he should start to think about slowing down.

That this should be more of a topic now, only because of spy-gate, is really absurd, 'cause Dennis had nothing to do with that. What he had control over was Team McLaren Mercedes, and their efforts were pretty impressive this year. What McLaren came up with this year, their performance, is what he should be judged on, not what Coughlan orchestrated.
I believe McLaren have made good profits each year for a very long time now, so it's a company controlled by a good group of people, and Ron Dennis is sitting on the end of the table.
Like him or not, he's clearly a great leader, but he deserves to slow down now, and he probably wants to, but he has said that he'd prefer to hand things over when they've won another championship and everything he wants to be settled, is settled.
When it's time, Whitmarsh will also make a great leader - a fine successor for Ron Dennis.
(and it's not like he's not a vital part of McLaren already.)

#9 DLaw

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 16:46

Both should be kicked out. Period.

Shameless duo.

#10 Tigershark

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 16:54

Originally posted by SCHUEYFAN
I think it's a good time for wRONg to bow out

I'm all for jokes about of Ron Dennis, Jean Todt or anyone - but this is hardly a constructive way to start a discussion. :

Should Ron Dennis resign? I don't think so, in regards to the Stepney-McLaren story I'm not convinced he knew what was going on until the whole thing blew up in Hungary. The one thing that makes me think it might be time for him to go is his huge connection with Hamilton (and his always-around-dad) - as we've seen with Alonso this year that is a big thing within the team and Mercedes and the sponsors might prefer to have a more balanced team. Still, if they're both winning races like this year it might not really matter.

Whatever you think of Ron Dennis, he's been able to keep McLaren a team to be reckoned with for a very long time and he doesn't deserve the shameful 2007 campaign to be his final. :)

#11 sterling49

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 17:13

Originally posted by race addicted
Why do you choose to set the tone like that? "wRong" is just childish and you risk putting off people that could otherwise contribute to the discussion.

....

No, it's not time for Ron Dennis to hand things over to Whitmarsh, even if he has in the last few interviews been more willing to talk about when he'd want to toss in the towel. Clearly - and rightly so, as he's worked tremendously hard for so long - cause afterall he is 60(?), he should start to think about slowing down.

That this should be more of a topic now, only because of spy-gate, is really absurd, 'cause Dennis had nothing to do with that. What he had control over was Team McLaren Mercedes, and their efforts were pretty impressive this year. What McLaren came up with this year, their performance, is what he should be judged on, not what Coughlan orchestrated.
I believe McLaren have made good profits each year for a very long time now, so it's a company controlled by a good group of people, and Ron Dennis is sitting on the end of the table.
Like him or not, he's clearly a great leader, but he deserves to slow down now, and he probably wants to, but he has said that he'd prefer to hand things over when they've won another championship and everything he wants to be settled, is settled.
When it's time, Whitmarsh will also make a great leader - a fine successor for Ron Dennis.
(and it's not like he's not a vital part of McLaren already.)


A good, well thought out post :up: RD deserves a better hearing than he receivess on RC, he has achieved a tremendous amount. I personally think he is a fair and honest man, End of,

#12 Juan Kerr

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 17:17

It would be the worse possible time, he is a brilliant team boss and has every opportunity to proove that point again now that the spanish inquisition has been thrown out after trying to do nothing more than frame him for something he didn't do or know about.

#13 SCHUEYFAN

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 17:27

Starting off a thread using a slur on anyone's name is childish but such is my hatred of the man. As for him stepping down, I'm suggesting in name only, not to give up his shares in the company. Outside of F1, I do respect him for the empire he has created, there's no doubt he knows how to run a business, but an F1 team is another matter as far as I'm concerned. I'm saying he should still collect his paycheques and dividends but to relinquish controls on the F1 activities.

#14 race addicted

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 17:37

Only a very disturbed person can develop hatred for someone they don't know, or haven't even met once.

#15 sterling49

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 17:47

As a mechanic for Jochen Rindt in the Cooper Car Company days,to Rondel Reacing, to McLaren, RD has a fair resume I would say,I would definitely include running THE F1 team that made and ran the cars for Prost, Lauda, Senna, Hakkinen......in their WDC years, I would say that not many other self made men have a CV that is of similar quality.

#16 Boui

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 17:55

"Only a very disturbed person can develop hatred for someone they don't know, or haven't even met once."

I'm with you on this one - it's amazing to come across the sheer number of semi-hysterical comments about RD and MercMcLaren

#17 jesee

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 20:46

[QUOTE]Originally posted by SCHUEYFAN
[B]Starting off a thread using a slur on anyone's name is childish but such is my hatred of the man.

Hate is such a loaded and negative term that i really dont think that is what you meant. Ron dennis and mclaren are almost synonymous and yes like any other team boss in f1, he has had his downsides, but to try and kick the man when he is down, especially after the biggest fine in any sporting history, is unfair. People sometimes forget the politics of f1 and i dont remember a season as dirty as the last one. To me the biggest culprit is not the teams but the discombobulated FIA , whose inconsistent and sometimes illogical decisions have left the sport lacking direction and vision. The sad thing is, there seems to be no salvation on sight and the same mess will continue.

#18 ex Rhodie racer

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 21:24

Give the man his dues for what he has achieved in the past, but the way he conducted affairs at Mac this year must bring his leadership into question.
By replacing him the team might regain the stability it undoubtedly lost this season, although, to be honest, I can´t see him voluntarily standing down. It normally takes a bit of pressure to prise the reigns of power from those at the top, and IMO, Ron won´t prove the exception.

#19 RSNS

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 21:56

While this year he has shown lack of control and less equanimity than he used to, let us not forget that this was a terrible year for Maclaren. I confess I sometimes wonder what makes him do some of the things he has done, but after all I don't know what happened in MacLaren this year.

So, let's wait and see.

Also, it will be difficult for him to leave: he has put too much of himself into the team and the team is just a part of him.

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#20 alfa1

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 22:00

Originally posted by SCHUEYFAN
I think it's a good time for wRONg to bow out (not so gracefully) after he managed to turn a potential dream season for McLaren into an utter debacle.



What a bitter, quitters attitude.
A man has a multi-championship winning career lasting decades, forming one of the best ever formula 1 teams, one that still remains very near the top of the grid... and you think that if he had a bad year (after a very good start) then he should quit and walk away?
Says a lot more about you than it does him.

#21 pjabyrne

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 22:20

I'm not the Ronster's biggest fan but at least he built McLaren up to the powerhouse it is today - a massive achievement.

However partisan observers this year cited his ability to deal with Senna/Prost all those years ago as proof of his man-management abilities at the height of the Lewis/Fernando feud. But Dennis was 20 years younger back then (only about a decade older than his drivers) and I can't help feeling Ron has become very set in his ways and is not able to relate to the younger generation. Alonso, Kimi, Montoya - they've all left McLaren in the space of 2 years and have nothing good to say about the over-regimental regime at McLaren.

I don't have a right to say this I guess but Whitmarsh I just don't rate. I see him as being a bit like Honda's Nick Fry - just doesn't seem to inspire confidence. I remember this year back about the second or third race. He was interviewed and declared Lewis had the 'potential to be the greatest driver of all time'(!) This during a period when even Ron and Lewis himself were trying to play things down to avoid the pressure of huge expectations. And it seemed a huge slap in the face for Alonso who had already been making noises about feeling uncomfortable and was still having difficulties with assimilating to the team and tyres. For about a dozen reasons i thought it one of the stupidest and most naive utterings I've ever heard from a so called 'manager'. My guess is he's there because he's Ron's little yes-man.

Get rid of 'em both... :down:

#22 Ricardo F1

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 22:22

Ron Dennis will step down when Ron Dennis is good and ready - not when idiotic haters around here suggest it's a good idea. And Mr Whitmarsh will undoubtedly be an entirely adequate replacement.

#23 nordschleife

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 23:11

This must be as good a time as any to take the measure of Ron Dennis and where he stands among his peers: the team managers/ team directors/ the guys who made the decisions that steered their team to victory or defeat.

Ron Dennis:
WDC facilitator 9 times (84, 85, 86, 88, 89, 90, 91, 98, 99)
WCC facilitator 7 times (84, 85, 88, 89, 90, 91, 98)

Sir Frank Williams:
WDC facilitator 7 times (80, 82, 87, 92, 93, 96, 97)
WCC facilitator 9 times (80, 81, 86, 87, 92, 93, 94, 96, 97)

Colin Chapman:
WDC facilitator 6 times (63, 65, 68, 70, 72, 78)
WCC facilitator 7 times (63, 65, 68, 70, 72, 73, 78)

Jean Todt:
WDC facilitator 6 times (00, 01, 02, 03, 04, 07)
WCC facilitator 7 times (99, 00, 01, 02, 03, 04, 07)

#24 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 23:14

Originally posted by Ricardo F1
Ron Dennis will step down when Ron Dennis is good and ready - not when idiotic haters around here suggest it's a good idea. And Mr Whitmarsh will undoubtedly be an entirely adequate replacement.


I see no reason for Dennis to step down, he is for all intents and purposes 'Mclaren'.

Neither do I see a reason for you being unable to post just once without painting the swiping troll brush. It is a valid question, as is it a valid question if Mosley, Todt and Fry, Toyota current management, Gerhard Berger and any other CEO / Manager of a team.

I see no reason for Todt or Mosley to step down. Fry have been parked so brawn can take over, and for Hondao to finally run a F1 operation worthy of them, Toyota have yet to make the same decission, and Gerhard Berger have been very unimpressive from the moment he came in. And named manager not doing a good enough job would be Berger.

But you want to fight your windmills.

:cool:

#25 Sakae

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 23:38

Move that circus to Stuttgart, change the name and hire German managers. Problem solved.

#26 Mauseri

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Posted 18 November 2007 - 23:51

Asking ron to quit the directorship is like asking pope quit vatican.

#27 hedges

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 01:25

Na, Ron can and should decide when he wants to step down and not before.

For better or worse Ron and McLaren are one in the same for me and I think any team could have screwed the pooch the way McLaren did this year, espionage was just getting out of hand so it's no wonder someone overstepped the line and a team found itself trying to "manage" the situation. I think they made a pigs ear of it though.

Still, as much as I dislike Rons holier than though attitude and apparent control freak management style he has had incredible success with McLaren and will continue to do so. I can't really imagine anyone who's available stepping into his shoes and doing a better job, certainly not in the short term.

#28 hedges

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 01:28

Originally posted by race addicted
Only a very disturbed person can develop hatred for someone they don't know, or haven't even met once.


I agree, but then I also find the hero worship that some here exhibit without knowing the person just as disturbing.

#29 riffola

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 02:11

Keep Ron, get rid off Whitmarsh.

#30 SCHUEYFAN

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 02:24

Let's set the record straight, when I say hate the man, it's for what he does when he's on the clock doing his job. I have no idea what he's like at home, with friends, etc., and he is in all likelihood a decent guy and there is never anything personal directed at him. But all the posters here are armchair critics and yes we all develop opinions (sometimes very strong) as to how drivers, managers, owners etc. do their jobs. If I had a dollar for every post I read here about people hating M. Schumacher, I'd have a small fortune, and at the end of the day it's his on track personna that people don't like. Get over it.

#31 HP

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 02:30

Anyhow. This year Ron Dennis wasn't able to curb the infighting on the track, and he was unaware of certain things inside the factory that became very damaging for McLaren-Mercedes.

Not a good sign of leadership. If this continues next year, lets hope that Ron Dennis realizes his time for retirement has come. I do understand if he has the desire to restore his companies credibility after all what happened this year, but since part of what has happened was his responsibility its questionable for me that he has what it takes to continue in his position.

His replacement. Whitmarsh? I'm not convinced he has the same capacity like Ron Dennis. The reason why I think that is that he sounds sometimes like a Ron Dennis clone. Which will be interesting to see how that develops when the model finally retires
.

Originally posted by race addicted
Only a very disturbed person can develop hatred for someone they don't know, or haven't even met once.

Oh really? Look at how some historical figures are still being hated by masses of people. Try Hitler for a start.

#32 HP

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 02:33

Originally posted by MiPe
Move that circus to Stuttgart, change the name and hire German managers. Problem solved.

Don't bet on that. I could give you a list of names where German managers run a company into the ground (particularly when they took over a company outside of Germany). And seeing how Mercedes has it's own share of huge problems, in Ron's position I would not dare to hand over leadership to them.

#33 miniman

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 03:06

I'm astounded at the number of blunders McLaren made this year. Had this happened at another team the man at the top would have been sacked long ago. Still, this is Ron Dennis we are talking about, an icon of the sport, a man who almost singlehandedly brought McLaren to the pinnacle and kept it there, he is entitled to have a bad year.

He needs to clean up his house however, and he needs a strong PR team going forward, evidently he doesn't have that yet. He also needs to get out of denial mode and show a bit more humility.

#34 LeD

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 04:20

I am astonished at the sheer impertinence of bulletin board posters calling for the resignation of the part-owner and director of a purely private entreprise. It's not as if those calling for his head are shareholders or voters: mind you, if they were shareholders they might be singing a very different tune. Ron Dennis - whatever some fanatics here might think - is not accountable to armchair critics that dribble venom onto the cyberpages of a bulletin board. He is accountable to his partners and his sponsors. And so far, his partners and sponsors seem perfectly supportive of him. If there were justifiable grounds to call for his head, you can be sure that as hard-headed entrepreneurs, they would have done the deed. And done it in a far more classy manner than shown by some of his detractors on this board.

#35 Ricardo F1

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 06:03

Originally posted by KWSN - DSM
It is a valid question, as is it a valid question if Mosley,

That you utter the name Mosley in the same sentence as Ron Dennis shows how little you value someone who built something as impressive as (today) Vodafone McLaren Mercedes.

#36 Knot

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 06:31

It's quite clear to me that Ron should take Max Moseley's place at the helm of the FIA.

#37 sterling49

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:20

Originally posted by Knot
It's quite clear to me that Ron should take Max Moseley's place at the helm of the FIA.


:lol: :lol: :rotfl:

#38 mclarensmps

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:40

Useless and retarted thread. :wave:

#39 sterling49

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 08:50

Originally posted by The Big Guns
Useless and retarted thread. :wave:


err, do you mean RETARDED?;) :lol:

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#40 Knot

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:03

Originally posted by sterling49


err, do you mean RETARDED?;) :lol:


No, no. Retarted. He's referring to the incident at Ron Dennis' house wherein his pop tarts kept popping out of his toaster, forcing him to retart them every time they popped up.

And you call yourself a Formula One fan! Everyone knows about this incident!

:mad:

#41 Johny Bravo

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:16

Voted No because Martin Whitmarsch aka Mclaren Information Minister is no better choice. A proven liar just as wRong.

They should step down hand in hand.

#42 ex Rhodie racer

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:18

Originally posted by LeD
I am astonished at the sheer impertinence of bulletin board posters calling for the resignation of the part-owner and director of a purely private entreprise. It's not as if those calling for his head are shareholders or voters: mind you, if they were shareholders they might be singing a very different tune. Ron Dennis - whatever some fanatics here might think - is not accountable to armchair critics that dribble venom onto the cyberpages of a bulletin board. He is accountable to his partners and his sponsors. And so far, his partners and sponsors seem perfectly supportive of him. If there were justifiable grounds to call for his head, you can be sure that as hard-headed entrepreneurs, they would have done the deed. And done it in a far more classy manner than shown by some of his detractors on this board.


OK Ron, take your pills and calm down. :rotfl: :wave:

#43 Oho

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:28

Originally posted by HP
Anyhow. This year Ron Dennis wasn't able to curb the infighting on the track, and he was unaware of certain things inside the factory that became very damaging for McLaren-Mercedes.


Indeed, now no matter how you look at it, Ferrari management is demonstrably not much better informed on internal affairs and don't get me even started on Renault whose defense, which incidentally has earned praise from the anti Ronzo faction, actually hinges on managements ignorance on internal affairs.

Figure that, Ronzo allegedly not being up too speed w.r.t the espionage affair makes him ill fit to lead his team, where as repeated incidents of serious IP leaks form Ferrari mean no such thing nor Renault's case where McLaren IP was loaded into Renault intra net and remained oblivious to the team management for almost a year.

Not only that in Ronzos case detractors want to keep the cake and eat it. That is Ronzo is embodiment of evil in shamelessly exploiting illegitimately obtained Ferrari IP while at the time he is an incompetent senile having hardly a clue what's going on inside his factory. How's that for cognitive dissonance.

#44 sensible

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:32

Its rons company (at least partly) so he can do what he likes. Would it be good for the sport if he wasnt there? Probably imho as he is very antagonistic in his dislike of ferrari which causes a lot of the bad blood. Should he step down? If - and only if - he wants to. People shouldnt be disbarred from doing what they do just because the are a**holes. If he did go should MW replace him? I hope not.

#45 sensible

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:35

Originally posted by race addicted
Only a very disturbed person can develop hatred for someone they don't know, or haven't even met once.

Thats a pretty naive and frankly incorrect statement.

#46 sensible

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:37

Originally posted by Ricardo F1
That you utter the name Mosley in the same sentence as Ron Dennis shows how little you value someone who built something as impressive as (today) Vodafone McLaren Mercedes.

he didnt.

#47 Atreiu

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:42

No.
And how should anyone here know who's the better businessman and team leader?

#48 Johny Bravo

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 09:51

Originally posted by Atreiu
No.
And how should anyone here know who's the better businessman and team leader?


Well, I certainly would not nominate for businessman and/or team leader of the year someone who

- got his team excluded from the WCC (because of holding 780 pages of competitors IP)
- got $100M fine
- got to the point that his 2xWDC driver blackmailed him
- got his 2xWDC driver leaving his team
- got his rookie WDC driver lose the WDC by not calling him in to the pits when he was running on canvas
- got caught lying numerous times...

#49 Sébastien

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:27

Originally posted by Johny Bravo


Well, I certainly would not nominate for businessman and/or team leader of the year someone who

- got his team excluded from the WCC (because of holding 780 pages of competitors IP)
- got $100M fine
- got to the point that his 2xWDC driver blackmailed him
- got his 2xWDC driver leaving his team
- got his rookie WDC driver lose the WDC by not calling him in to the pits when he was running on canvas
- got caught lying numerous times...

Yes all those things happened under his watch and certainly the driver mismanagement and lying are directly linked to Ron.

But what I find the worst is that this year he has managed to transform McLaren from the respectable honourable team full of (self proclaimed) integrity into a lying and cheating outfit of sore losers, as it is now perceived to be by many.

The one very valuable asset of McLaren was it´s image of respectability and it has lost much of it this year.

Look at the polls here:

65% Think that McLaren in relation to their appeal look like 'shameless hypocrites devoid of integrity'

67% Think Ron Dennis is a bigger hypocrite than Jean Todt.

Now I know that polls on a BB such as this only mean so much, but do you really think that one year ago people would have thought so negative about McLaren and Ron Dennis?

No, McLaren as a company has lost a lot of credibility and has severely damaged it´s positive image.
In 2008 a lot of work will have to be done to repair the damage and I doubt whether Ron Dennis, being the figurehead of all that´s gone wrong this year, will be the right man for the job and neither is Whitmarsh.

A new fresh manager possibly from the ranks of Mercedes, who is backed by a majority share that Mercedes would have to take in McLaren, could imo do a much better job in 2008.

#50 Atreiu

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Posted 19 November 2007 - 10:28

Originally posted by Johny Bravo


Well, I certainly would not nominate for businessman and/or team leader of the year someone who

- got his team excluded from the WCC (because of holding 780 pages of competitors IP)
- got $100M fine
- got to the point that his 2xWDC driver blackmailed him
- got his 2xWDC driver leaving his team
- got his rookie WDC driver lose the WDC by not calling him in to the pits when he was running on canvas
- got caught lying numerous times...



Unless the team was him and him only, get a grip.