James Allison has become the latest team member to sign a contract extension at Mercedes, with the technical director committing his long-term future to the team.
Originally joining as technical director in 2017, Allison went on to become chief technical officer at Mercedes for a spell, overseeing wider strategy and non-F1 projects. He returned to the role of technical director last year and says at the time he wasn’t thinking about the longer term but has now committed to an extension that he sees as important to show stability alongside team principal Toto Wolff’s recent new deal.
“I guess it wasn’t something that I thought about when he came back in that was more just instinctive, being asked if I could help and saying, ‘Yep!’” Allison said. “And then in the time that elapsed since, the desire to keep going with it, because it’s good fun and I hope I’m playing my part.
“I think it is definitely helpful for a team to know that it has stability, certainly a big deal for us to know that we have that stability with Toto and I hope in a smaller way that the folk here will be reassured to know that that’s the case.
“Less close to home, it helps with our partners as well to know that that is the case and means that everyone looking at us from the outside can see that there is stability and commitment to making the team able to work solidly and enjoy good success in the future.”
Wolff says Allison is a key asset to Mercedes in a number of ways, as well as praising their personal relationship among the leadership team.
“I am thrilled that James has committed his long-term future to the team,” Wolff said. “Put simply, he is the most impressive technical leader in our sport. His gladiator spirit, along with his knowledge, experience, and determination, make him second to none. His influence and impact, however, goes so much further than that.
“Since joining in 2017, he has been a key ally and sparring partner for me personally. We can challenge each other openly and honestly, an embodiment of the ‘tough love’ culture of the team that is vital in helping us all perform at our very best.
“Most importantly, though, James is a true friend you can rely on, not only in times of success but in difficult moments too. It has been a pleasure to work with him over the past seven years and I look forward to doing so for many more to come.”