Sport

Martin Whitmarsh returning to the F1 grid with Aston Martin

Martin Whitmarsh returning to the F1 grid with Aston Martin

Former McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh is returning to Formula One in October in a new senior management role with Silverstone-based Aston Martin.

The team, owned by Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll, said on Tuesday that Whitmarsh had been appointed group CEO of a newly-created Aston Martin Performance Technologies, which will include the F1 team.

It will also develop the group’s technical capabilities and intellectual property.

Stroll said Aston Martin aimed to become championship winners within four to five years and evolve into a £1bn (roughly R20,245,695,600) business.

"Martin has enjoyed a long, successful and high-profile career, spanning the motorsport, automotive, aerospace, marine and renewable-energy sectors," said the Canadian.

"Moreover, he is a proven winner in Formula One."

Whitmarsh, 63, worked at McLaren for 25 years and was principal from 2008 to 2014, with now-seven times world champion Lewis Hamilton winning his first title with the Woking-based team in 2008.

He was also chairman of the now-defunct Formula One Teams Association and CEO of Ben Ainslie's America's Cup yachting challenge.

"Lawrence intends Aston Martin to win Formula One world championships, plain and simple, and I would not have joined him in that endeavour unless I was utterly convinced that it was an entirely achievable aim," said Whitmarsh.

"I am very enthused about the formation of the new Aston Martin Performance Technologies, under which corporate umbrella Aston Martin (F1) will sit, and I am excited about the prospect of developing and applying our technical capabilities and intellectual property as a successful and profitable new business."