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Dennis goes to the Palace

MCLAREN boss Ron Dennis was at Buckingham Palace in London yesterday for his appointment as a Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. The old British orders of chivalry may not seem to have much importance in the modern world but the award is a significant one as it recognizes the industrial importance of Grand Prix racing in Britain today. The CBE is the top award available to British citizens beneath a knighthood and in motor racing there have been only a handful of people who have been so decorated in modern times.

Colin Chapman, the founder of Team Lotus and the man who built up the Lotus car company, was awarded a CBE and he was followed by Robin Herd, the man who built up March Engineering, Frank Williams (who was later knighted) and John Cooper, although his award came only recently although his major influence was in the 1960s and 1970s.

McLaren is a major high technology employer in the south east of England with plans for the company to employ over one thousand people within the next 18 months.

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