Jaguar confirms deal with Adrian Newey

JAGUAR RACING today confirmed that it has signed a contract with McLaren-Mercedes technical director Adrian Newey to join the Ford-owned team in August 2002. The news was issued in an official release embargoed until 8.30am UK time this morning and is expected to prompt a response from the McLaren-Mercedes squad.

Jaguar Racing's Chief Operating Officer and Team Principal, Bobby Rahal, is delighted at having his long-standing friend and former race engineer coming to join him in the challenge of taking Jaguar Racing to the top of Formula One:

"I'm thrilled at the prospect of having Adrian on-board in what promises to be a very exciting period for Jaguar in Formula One," he said. "We go back many years to our days together in Indy cars and our friendship has certainly played a key role in making this happen. Design teams led by Adrian have created six of the Formula One cars that have won the Constructors' and the Drivers' World Championship in the last nine years with an average win rate of 50%.

"His influence has dominated the last decade of the first century of motor racing and this new chapter with Jaguar Racing will provide Adrian with an opportunity to take one of the most emotive names in motor racing to the status of Formula One World Champions. I have always said that we needed the best people to take us into championship contention and you don't get any better than Adrian Newey. He is, in my opinion, the man responsible for generating more speed in F1 than any driver or engine out there. The art of aerodynamics is critical to a team's success and the arrival of Adrian at Jaguar Racing will leave us short of nothing in that department."

"This has not been an easy decision for me to make" commented Adrian Newey. "I have enjoyed hugely my four years to date at McLaren and take great satisfaction from the success that we as a team have achieved. Moreover, this success has been combined with forming many lasting friendships within the team especially with Ron (Dennis) and Martin (Whitmarsh).

"I would also like to pay tribute to my engineering colleagues at McLaren, without whom this success would not have been possible. But, in the end the prospect of working once again with my close friend, Bobby, whom I have known since 1984 at March Racing, combined with the prospect of the exciting challenge that Jaguar Racing offers proved irresistible."

"In the meantime I have a job to do and I will continue to be fully committed to McLaren in our bid to win races and World Championships."

Niki Lauda, Chairman of the Premier Performance Division commented: "This is great news for Jaguar Racing and we are obviously delighted at pulling off something of this magnitude. We have always been deadly serious about our F1 ambitions and this goes quite some way to proving our commitment to winning."

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