Mercedes: Brawn to leave team and hand leadership over to Wolff and Lowe

28 November, 2013

Ross Brawn to leave Mercedes

Ross Brawn to leave Mercedes

The Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team today announced that Ross Brawn will step down from his position as Team Principal at the end of 2013.

Following an extended period of open discussion between the team’s key stakeholders, Ross has chosen to hand over the team leadership to Executive Director (Business) Toto Wolff and Executive Director (Technical) Paddy Lowe.

Ross Brawn, who will formally leave the team on 31st December 2013, said: “The most important consideration in my decision to step down from the role as Team Principal was to ensure that the timing was right for the team in order to ensure its future success.

“The succession planning process that we have implemented during this year means we are now ready to conduct the transition from my current responsibilities to a new leadership team composed of Toto and Paddy.

Ross Brawn with Paddy Lowe and Toto Wolff

Ross Brawn with Paddy Lowe and Toto Wolff

“Mercedes-Benz has invested significantly in both the personnel and infrastructure at Brackley and Brixworth. Thanks to the one-team approach we have implemented between the two facilities, the team is uniquely positioned to succeed in 2014 and I am proud to have helped lay the foundations for that success.

“However, 2014 will mark the beginning of a new era in the sport. We therefore felt this was the right time to simultaneously begin a new era of team management to ensure that the organisation is in the strongest possible competitive position for the years to come.

“We can take pride not just in our on-track achievements but also in the organisation we have built at Brackley. In its different guises over the past six seasons, this team has delivered some of the most memorable moments of my career. Our second place in this season’s Constructors’ Championship is an important milestone on the road to Championship success.

Ross Brawn with Niki Lauda

Ross Brawn with Niki Lauda

“I am confident that the future will hold just as much success for the team and will take real pride in having played my own part in those achievements.”

Niki Lauda, Non-Executive Chairman of Mercedes AMG Petronas, commented: “First of all and most importantly, we must say thank you to Ross. When you consider the step that has been made from finishing fifth in 2012 to the second place that we have secured this season, he has been the architect of this success. He put the plans in place to recruit key people since early 2011, and the performance this season shows that the team is on the right track.

“We have had long discussions with Ross about how he could continue with the team but it is a basic fact that you cannot hold somebody back when they have chosen to move on. Ross has decided that this is the right time to hand over the reins to Toto and Paddy and we respect his decision.

Ross Brawn with Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg

Ross Brawn with Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg

“Toto and Paddy are the right people to lead our team in 2014 and beyond.”

Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, concluded: “Last winter, we restructured the management of our F1  activities, with the support of Niki Lauda. The first step was to convince Toto Wolff to join us to run our Mercedes-Benz motorsport activities and our Formula 1 company. The second step was the recruitment of Paddy Lowe during 2013.

“This gave us a clear succession plan for the time when Ross decided to step down from his current role, and that time has now come. I have every confidence that Toto and Paddy will build on Ross’ good work and that they possess exactly the balance of skills required to lead our team to World Championship success.

“I would like to personally thank Ross for the calm authority with which he has led our works team since 2010, for his crucial contribution to our team’s development and also for the undoubted share he will have in our future success. It has been a pleasure working with him over the past four years and I extend all my very best wishes to him for the future.” (Mercedes)

Subbed by AJN.


  • Spartacus

    Sounds like they installed two new managers and waited for Ross Brawn to quit. Brawn has delivered world championships at Benetton, Ferrari and Brawn so giving up on such winning experience is a bold move.

    Will be interesting to see where Ross Brawn ends up.

  • MightyK

    Good luck Mercedes, you’re going to need it.

  • Eevel

    Well done Ross on taking Mercedes to second place in the championship in such a short space of time, ahead of such well established respected teams such as Ferrari and McLaren. You can be proud of your achievements and the legacy you are leaving.

  • McLarenfan

    I think Ross feels he was forced out, Niki has been trying to keep him but Ross said it hinged on who was NO: 1 and obviously Toto & Paddy are not Ross.

  • Ian Mac

    I suspect that Jenson’s been calling Ross at all hours to beg him to become McLaren’s saviour. Meanwhile, I wonder what Lewis thinks about losing such an accomplished leader.

  • PB

    Lets see how good Wolf and Lowe are and where the team finishes at the end of 2014.

  • AFA

    Stupidest decision ever made by Mercedes!

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