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Whitmarsh on standby amid reports of McLaren 'revolt'

Martin Whitmarsh (GBR) McLaren Chief Executive Officer
© XPB 

Former McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh says he's ready to return to his old team if they want him back.

It comes amid tabloid reports that the team is facing a "revolt from disgruntled staff" who are deeply unhappy with the direction of the team after years of declining fortunes.

Britain's Daily Mail newspaper reported that "patience broke earlier in the week when racing director Eric Boullier led the usual post-race debrief in the Woking factory."

"Enough is enough,' one source told the newspaper. "A delegation is being pulled together."

An admission from the team's senior management that they remained at a loss to explain the disappointing performance of this year's MCL33 was said to be the final straw.

"Members of the shop floor were so furious at what they saw as the incompetence of their leaders that they plan to enlist Whitmarsh’s support as a last-ditch attempt to help turn around the ailing team," said the report.

“I live locally and I bump into friends who work at McLaren," said Whitmarsh, who was team principal at McLaren until 2014. "They are disappointed with what is happening and remonstrate with me.

"Tim Goss's departure pitched me over the edge,' he admitted, referring to the recent departure of the team's chief technical officer.

"Tim has a fantastic intellect, and is a hard-working, non-political, value-adding member of the team. He was scapegoated."

The team's diversification into other championships such as a potential IndyCar venture has also fanned the flames of unrest.

“The team used to be all about winning in Formula 1," he said. "Now they are looking at other avenues — going to race in IndyCar and Le Mans, for example.

"They are great things in themselves, but McLaren going in that direction, rather than making Grand Prix racing their sole priority, makes me shudder."

Whitmarsh said he had sympathy for his former colleagues, and that he would be happy to play his part if recalled.

"If a delegation showed up at my door, I wouldn't turn them away," he confirmed. "They know where I am."

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