Theissen to step down as BMW boss

Mario Theissen will leave his position as BMW's motorsport boss next year, to be replaced by former Toyota F1 team manager Jens Marquardt

Theissen to step down as BMW boss

Theissen, who has been the German manufacturer's motorsport director since 1999, says that next year's transitional season before a DTM entry in 2012 is the right time to hand over to his successor.

"We have planned and prepared this changeover very carefully," said the 58-year-old.

"With the realignment of BMW Motorsport and the decision in favour of the DTM project, the path to a successful future on the race track has been mapped out.

"Now is the best time to entrust the leadership of BMW Motorsport to new hands. I have no doubt that in Jens Marquardt we have found the right man for this exciting task."

Marquardt will join BMW on January 1st next year to work alongside Theissen for six months. Theissen will then officially step down on June 30th.

Before joining Toyota, Marquardt worked for Ilmor on the development of F1 and CART engines, joining Toyota's F1 team in 2000 through the engine department and serving as team manager from 2008.

"Heading up BMW Motorsport is a dream job for me and a tremendous show of confidence," said 43-year-old Marquardt. "The endurance events with the BMW M3, the broad-based customer sport programme, the promotion of junior racing talent and above all the DTM project are all fascinating challenges.

"I know that Mario Theissen will support me in every way and I can hardly wait to get down to work."

Toyota Motorsport president Yoshiaki Kinoshita added: "While we are naturally sad to lose Jens, we can understand why this was an opportunity he felt he had to take and we wish him the very best for his future.

"As well as his valued contribution to our Formula 1 project from beginning to end, Jens has played a key role in TMG's emergence as a leading provider of high-performance engineering services and we are very grateful for his efforts.

"We have been aware of Jens' decision for some time. We are taking steps to strengthen our structure and ensure we can build on a very positive first year for TMG as a service supplier."

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