Eric Boullier resigns as McLaren F1 Racing Director
Eric Boullier has resigned from his role as McLaren's Racing Director, the Formula 1 team has announced, with Gil de Ferran taking up a newly-created position as part of a management reshuffle.
McLaren has endured a difficult campaign since switching from Honda to Renault power and holds only sixth place in the Constructors' Championship ahead of its home round in Britain this weekend.
Boullier faced pressure during preceding events in France and Austria and rejected suggestions that he should stand down from his post.
McLaren, however, announced on Wednesday that Chief Executive Zak Brown has accepted Boullier's resignation, with immediate effect.
"I am very proud to have worked with such a brilliant team over the past four years, but I recognise now is the right time for me to step down," said Boullier, who joined in 2014, having previously overseen the Renault/Lotus team.
"I want to wish everyone at McLaren the best for the remainder of the season and for the future."
McLaren has also announced that a 'simplified technical leadership team' has been implemented with immediate effect.
Simon Roberts, COO of McLaren Racing, will oversee production, engineering and logistics, Andrea Stella has been appointed as Performance Director, responsible for trackside operations, while Indianapolis 500 victor De Ferran will take up the new role of Sporting Director.
De Ferran previously worked in Formula 1 with BAR Honda and has been acting as an advisor to McLaren in recent months, having also coached Fernando Alonso at last year's Indianapolis 500.
A statement confirmed that 'these changes are the beginning of a comprehensive programme of positive changes to the technical leadership of McLaren’s racing organisation. The team will invest to retain and attract the best talent, internally and externally, to return McLaren Racing to the front of the grid.'
Team boss Brown said: "The performance of the MCL33 in 2018 has not met the expectations of anyone at McLaren, especially our loyal fans. This is not the fault of the hundreds of committed and hard-working men and women at McLaren.
“The causes are systemic and structural, which require major change from within. With today’s announcement, we start to address those issues head on and take the first step on our road to recovery.
“I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the entire team to thank Eric for his service and contribution to McLaren and wish him well in his future endeavours."