Allison Explains Why Picking Elliot as Mercedes F1 Technical Director was ‘Strange’

Published 07/10/2021, 9:25 AM EDT
BARCELONA, SPAIN – FEBRUARY 20: James Allison, chief technical director of Mercedes-AMG F1 Team at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on February 20, 2020 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Eric Alonso/MB Media/Getty Images)


James Allison, who played an instrumental role in Mercedes’ dominance in the turbo-hybrid era, has moved on from his role as the Technical director of the team. He is now the Chief Technical Officer of the Silver Arrows, with Mike Elliott filling in his old position. Speaking about his time as the technical director of the team, Allison also talked about the process of choosing his successor.

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Elliott, who served as the technology director until now, joined the team in 2021 as the Head of Aerodynamics. Before becoming a part of Mercedes’ crew, he was associated with McLaren F1 (aerodynamicist, trackside aerodynamicist and team leader of aerodynamic performance) from 2000-08 and Renault F1 (principal aerodynamicist) from 2008-12.

Formula One F1 – Austrian Grand Prix – Red Bull Ring, Spielberg, Styria, Austria – July 3, 2021, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action during qualifying REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

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I’ve got very mixed feelings about it: James Allison

According to PlanetF1, Allison will start his new job at the beginning of July and will help embed his successor in his job as technical director. Explaining how he felt while choosing his replacement, he said “I’ve got very mixed feelings about it.

SOCHI, RUSSIA – James Allison, Technical Director at Mercedes GP walks in the Paddock during final practice for the Formula One Grand Prix of Russia at Sochi Autodrom in Sochi, Russia. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

This is by far and away the best, most exciting, and most fulfilling job I’ve had over the arc of my career and I’ve loved every moment of being technical director here over the four seasons prior and the half-season so far.

And so voluntarily deciding to hand that on to a successor is a strange experience because it’s not normal to walk away from a thing you love.” said the former technical director.

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Mike will bring vigor to Mercedes technical director role: James Allison

Since he has worked closely with Elliott, Allison believes that the former is thoroughly equipped to be Mercedes‘ new technical director. He also stated that he will support Eliott throughout the transition to get him updated with the title.

He said, “But nevertheless, the person who is coming next, Mike, will pick up the baton from me and accelerate away with it. He will bring to it a vigor and a dedication I’m sure will see the team very well served. His standard of engineering judgment and his values and behaviors as a leader are top drawer.”

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It will be tough for Mike to fill in Allison’s shoes, especially given the success the later helped Mercedes achieve. Do you think Elliott will be able to take the Silver Arrows to new heights?

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Devang Chauhan

156 articles

Devang Chauhan is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having completed his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication, he has a keen eye for writing engaging and detailed articles on F1. Previously a writer for Sport Social's 'Chase Your Sport' Magazine, Devang has been a ardent follower of the sport for over a decade and has attended two editions of the Indian Grand Prix.

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