6. Ron Dennis CBE

Motor Racing – Formula One World Championship – Bahrain Grand Prix – Race Day – Sakhir, Bahrain
Age 67
Occupation Chairman, McLaren Group
Nationality English
Position last year

Prior to Dennis’s arrival at McLaren in September 1980, the team was going through a particularly uncompetitive stint. The team had last won a grand prix with then defending World Champion James Hunt in 1977 and had finished a lowly seventh in the 1980 constructors’ title with John Watson and Alain Prost. Even in those early days Dennis recognised the young Frenchman’s potential but was unable to prevent him moving to the Renault team for 1981, a season that saw McLaren once again winning races. The year also saw many other teams struggling to duplicate Barnard’s revolutionary carbon-fibre chassis.

In 1981 Dennis and his business partners bought out the other McLaren shareholders, Teddy Mayer and Tyler Alexander. In 1983 Dennis persuaded then-Williams backer Mansour Ojjeh to become a partner in McLaren International. Ojjeh invested in Porsche-built turbocharged engines which carried the name of his company, Techniques d’Avant Garde (TAG).

The head of the McLaren Formula 1 team, Ron Dennis stepped down in 2009 following political pressure from, then FIA President, Max Mosley. Despite this move, it is widely seen that Dennis holds a significant influence over the direction of the Formula 1 team and is now back to being seen at all the Grands Prix. Dennis owned 15% of the McLaren Group along with Mansour Ojjeh, Daimler AG and the Bahraini Mumtalakat Holding Company, but during 2011 reached a deal to buy back 10% of his McLaren shares from Daimler and is now back to holding 25%. On 16 January 2014 it was announced that Ron Dennis has returned to the role of Group CEO of McLaren, combining his current role as Chairman of McLaren Group. In December 2014, he purchased 50% of McLaren Technology Company from Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.




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