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How do you rate Nick Fry?


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#1 glorius&victorius

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 08:59

I cannot help to think that when BAR Honda was under David Richards management, with Willis on the technical side that the team seemed to be in an upward trend.

For the last three (or four?) seasons the team has been under Nick Fry and has gradually slumped. That is a fact.

Perhaps Nick Fry's only "victory" so far has been getting Ross Brawn into the management team, but on the other hand one cannot attribute that to Nick Fry: Ross needed a new challenge and Honda could give him what he was looking for.

The other "victory" for Honda's was in Hungary 2006: a rather one off success for the team due to Button's good race craft and a bit of luck.

But apart from these two highlights there are really not much highlights under Mr. Fry's management.

Perhaps I am missing something and completely wrong in my evaluation of his 3 (or 4) years (??).

It would also be nice if someone can post some inside information... i.e. how does the guy manages Honda F1 day to day... When we talk of teambosses like Briatore, Dennis, Williams and Todt and even Dave Richards we over the years got a fairly good impression of their style etc.

How about Nick Fry?

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#2 bogi

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 09:03

I don't know if it's his idea but breathing today is much more easier. Earth my dream really works :rotfl:

#3 wingwalker

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 09:15

It wasn't just "a bit of luck" in Hungary, lots of cars crashed out in front of Button. (Which doesn't mean it wasn't a great drive).

#4 Atreiu

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 09:44

I don't.
But I do rate the Honda F1 team and a huge and terrible disappointment so far.

#5 K-One

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 09:50

I say fry him

#6 Hacklerf

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 09:56

Nick should have been Fryed a long time ago, the worst decision Honda made was getting rid of Richards, and the results show that, but the best decision they have made since entered F1 again was to hire Brawn

#7 tidytracks

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 11:19

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c/o Sniff Petrol

Previous leaps into a world that makes no ****ing sense have included, “This Japanese bloke seems good at techie stuff. Willis, get your coat, you’re fired,” and of course the legendary, “Hi, is that Super Aguri? I want you to take our race winning 2006 car, it’s actually completely shit and we’ve got something much better for 2007…”



#8 BerndRos

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 11:22

He is a complete P C waster who would not say boo to a goose :down:

#9 Daniel Lester

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 11:26

Fry is Honda's problem. along with the Japanese fella that took over from Geoff Willis (two teams made the mistake believing Willis was the thing holding them back from becoming winners, yet in reality it seems he was the one holding the teams in 2nd or 3rd place). With Brawn at least they have someone credible to point them in the right direction, but Brawn doesn't have much of a record without MSc around.

#10 Sakae

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 11:39

Originally posted by glorius&victorius
I cannot help to think that when BAR Honda was under David Richards management, with Willis on the technical side that the team seemed to be in an upward trend.

For the last three (or four?) seasons the team has been under Nick Fry and has gradually slumped. That is a fact.

Perhaps Nick Fry's only "victory" so far has been getting Ross Brawn into the management team, but on the other hand one cannot attribute that to Nick Fry: Ross needed a new challenge and Honda could give him what he was looking for.

The other "victory" for Honda's was in Hungary 2006: a rather one off success for the team due to Button's good race craft and a bit of luck.

But apart from these two highlights there are really not much highlights under Mr. Fry's management.

Perhaps I am missing something and completely wrong in my evaluation of his 3 (or 4) years (??).

It would also be nice if someone can post some inside information... i.e. how does the guy manages Honda F1 day to day... When we talk of teambosses like Briatore, Dennis, Williams and Todt and even Dave Richards we over the years got a fairly good impression of their style etc.

How about Nick Fry?

I think results on the track (or lack of thereof) speaks volumes, if you had to ask. Now Fry (or Honda??) hired Ross Brawn to do essentially his job. Fry may give himself big business titles, and British Press can call him whatever they want, but if I were a shareholder in the team, I would not invest even one weak American Cent into him, which is probably the only one true measure of trust of his managerial ability.

#11 glorius&victorius

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 11:46

true.. but Fry is an excellent (cover-up) communicator... in the sense of PR talk, or in terms of selling an idea or justifying failure...

his quote from autosport.com today:

"It is just confidence," he (Fry) said. "A year ago we hoped we could do well and progress and some time in the future be champions. Now with Ross we are not hoping any more, we know we can do that."

and this (no direct quote) : "Honda chief executive Nick Fry compared Brawn's arrival to the difference between being taught to parachute by a man reading a manual or by a veteran of 6,000 jumps."

- - -

Funny that he doesn't mention why he couldnt bring that confidence into the team over the last 3 years.

#12 Atreiu

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 11:53

Originally posted by glorius&victorius
(...)Funny that he doesn't mention why he couldnt bring that confidence into the team over the last 3 years.



It's indeed very funny that Fry doesn't admit to the world press that he has failed year after year at doing his job.
Duh.
;)

#13 jcbc3

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 11:58

Originally posted by Daniel Lester
.... but Brawn doesn't have much of a record without MSc around.



You might want to read up on Brawn before making a statement like that.

#14 Hacklerf

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 12:27

Originally posted by Daniel Lester
Brawn doesn't have much of a record without MSc around.



Remember those sports cars? i dont think they ever made any upgrades to them once they were built as they were already 2 or 3 years ahead of the rest as soon as they rolled out.

#15 Owen

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 12:31

Nick Fry: probably should have been axed years ago but hasn't.
This tells me he is probably very skilled at diplomacy and politics.

#16 z2z

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 12:44

Nry Fry : Useless Character in F1!!!

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#17 Hames Junt

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 12:47

Originally posted by wingwalker
It wasn't just "a bit of luck" in Hungary, lots of cars crashed out in front of Button. (Which doesn't mean it wasn't a great drive).


In my opinion only Raikkonen would have stopped him winning that race. And when Alonso crashed out Button was only seconds behind and catching him quickly.

#18 Chiara

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 12:55

At least he has finally had the sense to realise that things were not working as they were and made steps to rectify it, putting himself out of the job of team principal as a result.

I think he is a great PR person, but probably lacking somewhat on the organisational side....I mean who would put someone with virtually no F1 experience in as a technical director? being great with motorbikes is all very well, but they are slightly different from F1 cars IMO.

#19 Orin

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 12:58

Fry seems a great diplomat, but Richards' confrontational approach seemed to produce the results. I can't believe Richards would have let Honda get rid of Willis, in fact he was probably given an early exit because he wasn't willing to simply give in to the boardroom. Fry is too much of a consensus man, he seems to have made Button happy (whereas Richards managed to piss him off), but mostly he appears ineffectual. The one good thing he's done is to grab Brawn, and Brawn appears to have been given a free hand, much like Richards, so perhaps Honda can start to make progress again. :up:

I do hope Richards gets into F1, his no nonsense approach was great.

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#20 Maldwyn

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 13:01

Originally posted by Orin
Fry seems a great diplomat...

Which has probably been a very useful skill when discussing team performance with the Honda board in recent years.

#21 Orin

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 13:03

Originally posted by Maldwyn

Which has probably been a very useful skill when discussing team performance with the Honda board in recent years.


Especially when before the season it was always: "This will be our breakthrough year, I can feel it in my water!" :lol:

#22 Dragonfly

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 13:13

Cry
:p

#23 TickTickBooom

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 14:13

I don't know what to make of him, if I'm honest.

He seems to have done a lot of "team" building, but at the expense of "car" building. It worried me a lot when Gil left the team so suddenly, as I felt that perhaps it was all falling apart internally.

The thing that I know about Honda is how happy everyone in the team is to be there, and with all the new recruits - not least of them, Ross Brawn - I'm getting the impression that they're at the end of a transitional period.

I hope so, anyway, because if not, Fry really does blow.

#24 V8 Fireworks

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 01:28

Nick Fry... not the typical slave driving team manager, instead a laughing chirpy buffoon, most interesting! :)

#25 Nitropower

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 01:46

If for the results achieved, I rate him low. Really low. Look at Honda in 2006, and now at 2008 testing. They look the slowest in the grid by far... and if it's confirmed, that'd be not worrying, but quite serious.
I've read he is a diplomat and a good team builder. Well I don't give any worth to that for now because it's not helped achieve any goal at all.

#26 Zippel

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 02:32

He just appears to be a front for all the real decision makers behind the scenes, similar to George W Bush.

I mean Dave Richards, Niki Lauda, Bobby Rahal, etc getting sacked so quickly while less credible folk in Fry get a free ride into incompetence? Get outta here.

I rate Fry below Craig Pollock, which isn't much.

#27 Ricardo F1

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 05:14

Fry is fine ; and he got his man. What more do you want?? He knows he's not the man to do Dave Richards role - he couldn't and Honda suffered. He got Brawn. Eventually. The man just delivered part one. I also think Japan has been a BIG problem for him.

#28 Sakae

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 02:10

Originally posted by Ricardo F1
Fry is fine ; and he got his man. What more do you want?? He knows he's not the man to do Dave Richards role - he couldn't and Honda suffered. He got Brawn. Eventually. The man just delivered part one. I also think Japan has been a BIG problem for him.

Yeah right; let's blame Japanese. One voice at the Honda, the other one at Toyota.

#29 snx843

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 02:47

I do not rate him at all.

#30 armchair expert

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 02:55

If he is rated on his results, then he is a failure so far.
All the problems he has; whether it be technical, with the drivers, with his staff, or even interference from Head Office, are problems he is employed to solve so they can have a successful racing team.

At least he has secured Brawn, so finally a move in the right direction.

#31 pablo_a

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 03:04

In terms of results and the last couple sheds they've banged out under his reign, me thinks he's on borrowed time.

#32 Buttoneer

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 09:42

It's clear he has not been able to organise the team to produce the results their budget and personnel are capable of, which is unquestionably a failing. But the poor performance of the car is not an indication of his extreme incompetence as none of us can possibly hope to understand the difficulties of building a successful car and team.

#33 Hacklerf

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 09:50

The house that Nick built
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The House that Ross is building
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#34 former champ

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 09:56

He's stuffed. This year will be worse than last year for them. He may have lured Brawn but that alone won't save him. Honda have to really rebuild and its seriously going to take 3 years or so, barring further setbacks, before they are where they want to be. Fry does not have that long and nothing will happen for them this year.

#35 qvn

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 17:59

If Nick is good, Honda would not be that slump. But can't blame him alone for Honda failure.
However, I am not sure Brawn's arrival could make Honda winner. He needs someone like MS to be success. Let wait and see.

#36 HoldenRT

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 18:34

Even back when Honda were quite good, and with one interview in particular after Jenson got pole at Melbourne in 06 (but also others) Ive never been able to take him seriously. Like he's a bit too comical and friendly to lead Honda into a winning team. That was before last season and the upcoming failures of this season, so now he looks even worse. I can't believe he's still being taken seriously, if he is ever at Honda while they are in a position to consistantly win races I'll die of shock.

#37 k1ngy

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 16:17

http://www.formula1....008/1/7305.html

Funny look at the way Barrichello is looking at Brawn (Ive missed you)

If something miraculous doesnt happen this year Fry's gone

#38 HP

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 01:20

Originally posted by Ricardo F1
Fry is fine ; and he got his man. What more do you want?? He knows he's not the man to do Dave Richards role - he couldn't and Honda suffered. He got Brawn. Eventually. The man just delivered part one. I also think Japan has been a BIG problem for him.

Fry does things more in a Japanese manner. Richards not. That led to Honda and Richards parting.

In short term Richards brings results, the long term results remain to be seen.

About Fry I can only say this so far. If the results of the Honda team were as smooth as Fry's talking, they'd be multiple champions by now.

#39 Timstr11

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 08:56

There is so much nonsense in this thread , it is unbelievable.

I say it is the Technical Management of the team that has failed over the past years. And although the team CEO is ultimately responsible, how the technical department is organized and functions is the responsibility of the Technical Director, in this case Geoff Willis. Nick Fry is NOT an engineer and he has to rely on is TD. So yes, I say Geoff Willis did not do well here.

Fry: "Last year's [RA107] car unfortunately was the culmination of a four-year development process [2003 till 2007] which had gone past its sell-by date. It had worked very well for us for a few years, but we just pushed it too hard."

Brawn: "One of my priorities is to get the working methods and philosophies in place over the next couple of years so we have the right approach".

To me the above statements make clear that the design methodologies which were in place at Honda F1 the last couple of years were flawed. As a result, they never had a fast car at the start of the season. And although they could sometimes fight themselves back to the top 4, it was never enough.

Many people mention 2004 as a succes. But that was because things fell Honda's way as teams like McLaren were in big trouble and Honda also had some clever mechanical things on the car (e.g. Front Torque Transfer) and the 2004 Michelins somehow suited them right away.
If Dave Richards was that good, why was the 2005 car such a step back. The 2005 car was designed under Richards' leadership.

I'll never forget the this quote from Patrick Head when they fired Willis: "He [Willis] ran the aero department like a cottage cheese factory".

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#40 SeanValen

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 09:54

Nick Fry is just another poor element in the long history of that team

The team has been all talk, even since Jacques and Craig Pollock days, right through to Honda, they didn't excel in all areas, perhaps they got qualifying right at the expense of the race a few times, and made Sato go really fast until his engine blew, the team never really made you believe they knew what had to be done.

Ferrari, Renault, Mclaren and BMW are all where Honda should be now, I'm not waiting around for years to see how Brawn pulls the team through, all I can think of is, how much money and time has been wasted, and Jenson Button, well I bet he wishes Frank Williams never let him go for Montoya back in 2001, because at least Montoya got to challenge for wins in 2003/2001 and even the championship in 2003, as come Monaco time Williams had a real fast car, with the arrival of Hamilton, even if Button had a good car, there's alot of proving for him to do to carry a championship, it's kinda sad seeing a young driver use up most of his youth waiting for a car that may or maybe arrive, but he signed a long term contract, his risk, , but after a while, even a driver must get fed up of making up the numbers, when he does get a great car, maybe he'll be out of practice of delivering results at the front, it's a different ball game. I don't think a great driver would limit his options to this team, who knows, with a change of management, maybe someone hires Schumacher back to drive, what will Button do then, when MS and Brawn unite :smoking: But my main point is, when Brawn gets Honda up and running, I don't think it's a gurantee Rubens and Button will be around, could be another great new hot shot around the corner, and someone at Honda may want to take on a potential faster talent, especially if Alonso and Hamilton remain at their teams.

#41 Nobody

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 10:12

I'm surprised he survived the whole "hidden fuel-tank" saga Honda had a few years back. Maybe his handling of that gave Honda more confidence in him, and he fed Richards and Wills to the wolves over that one.

At least he's always smiling - dunno if Todt or Ron have even the muscles in their face for that. ;)

#42 Chiara

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 10:18

Originally posted by Nobody
At least he's always smiling - dunno if Todt or Ron have even the muscles in their face for that. ;)


I could be wrong, but I don't think the ability to smile sweetly is high up on most teams shopping list when it comes to hiring a team boss. That's what pit babes are there for....and they presumably look alot better in skimpy outfits than either Ron or Jean would. :p

#43 Timstr11

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 10:42

Originally posted by Nobody
I'm surprised he survived the whole "hidden fuel-tank" saga Honda had a few years back. Maybe his handling of that gave Honda more confidence in him, and he fed Richards and Wills to the wolves over that one.

At least he's always smiling - dunno if Todt or Ron have even the muscles in their face for that. ;)

Another nonsensical remark.

The hidden fuel tank was engineered under the technical direction of Geoff Willis. Not Fry's idea. The man is not an engineer.
The person who was spared in all of this was Geoff Willis.

At BAR-Honda Fry was Managing Director under Richards, both allied to Prodrive.
BAR-Honda was managed via an agreement between Prodrive and Honda Motor Company. When Honda decided not to continue with Prodrive, Fry was released from Prodrive to take over the reigns from Richards.

#44 Nobody

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 13:18

Originally posted by Timstr11
Another nonsensical remark.

The hidden fuel tank was engineered under the technical direction of Geoff Willis. Not Fry's idea. The man is not an engineer.
The person who was spared in all of this was Geoff Willis.

At BAR-Honda Fry was Managing Director under Richards, both allied to Prodrive.
BAR-Honda was managed via an agreement between Prodrive and Honda Motor Company. When Honda decided not to continue with Prodrive, Fry was released from Prodrive to take over the reigns from Richards.


Thanks for clearing that up, and forgive my foolishness.

Richards was indeed not around when the tank issue arose, and Fry was not an engineer, but merely a bystander, being only the CEO of Honda Racing at the time, making him completely blameless (as we have seen in the case of Dennis at McLaren in '07).

#45 Timstr11

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 14:34

Originally posted by Nobody


Thanks for clearing that up, and forgive my foolishness.

Richards was indeed not around when the tank issue arose, and Fry was not an engineer, but merely a bystander, being only the CEO of Honda Racing at the time, making him completely blameless (as we have seen in the case of Dennis at McLaren in '07).

We don't know this. The said tank may have been there in 2004 also.
And I am not saying the CEO's are just a bystanders. All I am saying it is too easy to blame them for everything. These are large multidisciplinary organizations. And how well an F1 team does is not dependant on one person only.
I Honda's case I say mainly the technical leadership has failed and Willis was a central part of it most of the time.

#46 Atreiu

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 16:57

There's a very long and insightful interview by Bernoldi at http://ultimosegundo...vograndepremio/ It's in portuguese and he talks about his entire career.
part 1
part 2


Anyhow, what Bernoldi says about his time at BAR is that Richards was a leader and the results speak for themselves. When he left (with key personel) and Fry came in, the team lost focus and even overestimated themselves, getting lost in the BAR/Honda transition.


It basically confirms what so many people seem to believe, Fry is no team leader.