Brawn: It’s fantastic to be returning


Former Ferrari technical director and world championship-winning team principal Ross Brawn stepped back into the Formula One arena on Monday in the new role of managing director for motorsport.

New owners Liberty Media said the burly Briton, whose Brawn team won the 2009 constructors’ and drivers’ titles, would be one of two managing directors under chief executive Chase Carey.

The other, for commercial operations, is former ESPN executive Sean Bratches.

“It’s fantastic to be returning to the world of Formula One,” Brawn, 62, said in a statement. “I’ve enjoyed consulting with Liberty Media these last few months and I’m looking forward to working with Chase, Sean and the rest of the Formula One team to help the evolution of the sport.”

“We have an almost unprecedented opportunity to work together with the teams and promoters for a better F1 for them and, most importantly, for the fans.”

Brawn, who was also team boss of now-champions Mercedes and the defunct Honda team as well as the master strategist who helped Michael Schumacher to seven world championships, has 40 years of F1 expertise.

Starting out at the March team as a milling machine operator in 1976, Brawn progressed through Williams, Haas Lola, Arrows and Benetton via a stint with Jaguar in sportscars.

He followed Schumacher from Benetton to Ferrari in 1997, leaving in 2006 when the great German retired.

Brawn then returned to the sport as Honda team principal at the end of 2007 and kept the outfit afloat after the Japanese manufacturer pulled out following the 2008 season.

Triumphant with Mercedes engines, he made a fortune when he sold the team to the German car maker at the end of the 2009 season and continued as principal until leaving reluctantly in 2013.

“What happened at Mercedes is that people were imposed on me who I couldn’t trust,” he said in ‘Total competition, lessons in strategy from Formula One’ — a book published last year that he co-authored with former Williams chief executive Adam Parr.

His resume includes 22 F1 world championships — 11 with Ferrari and seven with Williams.