James Allison will be an important “sparring partner” for Toto Wolff in his new role as Mercedes chief technical officer, the team principal admits.
Mercedes announced on Friday that Allison will be leaving his role as technical director to take on a new position within the team, overseeing wider aspects as CTO from July 1 onwards. Mike Elliott will replace him as technical director, but Wolff (pictured at right, above, with Allison) says finding a new position that could retain Allison’s expertise was of significant importance to him.
“Since joining Mercedes in 2017, James has been an exceptional technical leader for our team and he has made an enormous contribution to our performance: he combines huge passion and determination with detailed expertise and exceptional moral character,” Wolff said.
“We have known for a while that his time as technical director would be coming to an end this year and I am delighted that we have been able to shape this new role to keep him within our motorsport family. He will be an important sparring partner for me in the next years and I know that we still have much to achieve together.”
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Wolff says the promotion of Elliott — who has been at Mercedes since 2012 — strengthens the team overall, as it continues to prepare for senior management changes and promote from within.
“We often say that the organization is a dynamic organism, and that we need to adapt continuously if we want to truly thrive. Effective succession planning has been a strength of our team, so I am delighted to announce Mike in his new role as technical director.
“We first met at the beginning of 2013 when I joined the team and have spent many hours talking about the team and its evolution since then. Mike has developed from our head of aerodynamics to now being ready to take the step up to become technical director. Together with an exceptional group of senior technical leaders, this puts us in the best possible position for the sport’s next era.”