McLaren F1 team will work differently in the future, Brown believes

The McLaren Technology Group's new executive director Zak Brown says the way the Formula 1 operation works will be different in the future

McLaren F1 team will work differently in the future, Brown believes

Brown, 45, joins the company less than a week after Ron Dennis stepped down from his role as McLaren Group chairman and CEO, and will take up his position early next month.

Full Zak Brown Q&A on his new McLaren role

He has become one of the leading commercial figures in motorsport, having founded the JMI marketing agency in 1995, and will be responsible for the racing and marketing areas of the business.

"I love the winning culture that McLaren stands for," he said.

"But certainly when I get settled in and working closely with everyone, there will be some ways of working that may be different.

"That should come out as what the race team and brand look like.

"[Improvement's] up to Eric [Boullier, racing director] and Jost [Capito, CEO] in their respective teams who are ultimately responsible for making the car really fast.

"There's a lot for me to learn but like in any business you've got to show forward progress as fast as possible.

"There has been good forward progress in the past 24 months. But I don't know enough yet to start predicting grid positions.

"I've got to get back to winning sooner rather than later."

Brown has had success in finding sponsors for a number of F1 teams in his former role at JMI, including McLaren's Johnnie Walker, GlaxoSmithKline, Hilton and Chandon deals.

McLaren has been without a title sponsor since 2013, when its contract with Vodafone ended and Brown said that was high up the priority list.

"We need to contribute to making the economics better," he said.

"There's lots of space on the McLaren race car that needs filling with top luxury brands.

"We need partners and ultimately a title partner is a critical partner.

"We need to become a more attractive proposition to commercial partners, and we need to go forwards because there's clearly a reason we're not winning as much as we should.

"That needs to be addressed but I haven't identified where those pockets are."

Brown added F1 remains McLaren's racing focus but left the door open for a return to the Le Mans 24 Hours, a race it won in 1995.

"It would be very premature to talk about getting into other forms of motorsport, as F1 is priority one, two and three," he said.

"But, we do GT racing, and we do electronics in IndyCar and NASCAR.

"Outside of F1, would Le Mans be on the list of a conversation to be had? Absolutely - McLaren has won Le Mans before."

NO CONFLICT BETWEEN ROLES

Brown holds other positions within the sport, including as a non-executive chairman for Autosport's new owner Motorsport Network, but he does not believe there will be a conflict with his new McLaren role.

"I have a few roles such as Motorsport.com, Cosworth and my racing team [United Autosports] and those are all to stay," he said.

"I spend my time on the business side of Motorsport.com and not the editorial side.

"Therefore, figuring out how to create better products and build organisations has nothing to do with editorial, so I don't see any conflict.

"It's only a conflict if you turn it into one, that I don't intend do."

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