So, the Ron Dennis rumours have finally hardened up enough that the BBC feels it’s safe to report them.
The story comes in the form of a long profile which is a pretty interesting read, as well as setting out his different roles within McLaren and what he’s actually likely to be resigning from.
It’s just a shame it reads so much like an obituary. Here’s an excerpt, but do give the whole thing a spin.
Plus, it’s always entertaining to see one of those photos of Dennis shaking hands with Max Moseley in which they appear to be on the verge of starting a fight:
McLaren boss nears end of road
…so constant has been Dennis’s visible presence as the head of McLaren that, when he makes the decision, it will effectively mark the end of a remarkable career in top-flight sport.
McLaren have competed in the F1 championship under his guidance since 1981; within four years, they were an established force within the sport and very rarely have McLaren drifted away from the sport’s forefront.
They have employed some of F1’s great modern drivers – Niki Lauda won the team’s first drivers’ title; Alain Prost secured three crowns in the team’s cars, while Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton just missed out last season.
Yet, above and beyond any of these three, there are two drivers with whom he was most closely identified.
They are Ayrton Senna and Mika Hakkinen, both of them McLaren world champions, both of them hard-charging drivers with international appeal.
And in both cases, they were sportsmen who struck up a close bond with Dennis, a paternalistic relationship in which he was cast less as team principal and more as mentor.
That paternalism has been seen again in the way he has mentored Hamilton from the age of 12 all the way to F1 – a risky, unconventional decision that has paid off in spectacular fashion.
And that gets to the very heart of what has inspired Dennis. Read on here…