Former Ferrari racing supremo Ross Brawn could be heading to Brackley as Honda’s new team principal, according to reports from the BBC this morning.
If confirmed, this would represent an astounding coup for the underperforming team which, only yesterday, was treated to a public dressing-down from frustrated lead driver Jenson Button.
In an interview with the Mail on Sunday Button said: “I can’t be bothered with working my nuts off and qualifying 14th any more.”
But his fortunes, and that of former Ferrari driver Rubens Barrichello, may now be on the verge of improving dramatically.
Brawn, who left Ferrari to take a sabbatical at the time of Michael Schumacher’s retirement, will face a major task in turning round a team which has lost its way so thoroughly in the last year or more.
But few in the world of F1 doubt that he would be equal to it, and under his leadership Honda would be expected to become a major force at the front of the grid.
Brawn will work alongside the team’s chief executive Nick Fry who, according to the BBC, is rumoured to have been trying to secure his services since last spring.
Brawn began talks with Ferrari in the summer but he was unable to agree a deal to become their team principal.
Internal team politics which have recently seen the ascendancy of Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo at the expense of current team principal Jean Todt, a traditional ally of Brawn’s, may possibly be at work here.
An official announcement is expected today.
Our view: Poor old Jenson – what terrible timing…