Eric Boullier: No time frame for Jost Capito’s arrival at McLaren

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McLaren racing director Eric Boullier has confirmed that there is no fixed time frame for current Volkswagen motorsport chief Jost Capito to join the team.

As part of an ongoing restructuring and reorganization at McLaren, the team announced back in January that Capito would be leaving his role of director of motorsport at Volkswagen to become its new racing CEO this year.

No time frame was fixed in the initial announcement, with Capito continuing to work closely with Volkswagen in the meantime.

When asked by MotorSportsTalk if there was a set time for Capito to make the move over, Boullier confirmed that nothing had yet been firmed up.

“No, I don’t think there is a date yet. Maybe in the middle of the year, but I don’t know when,” Boullier said.

The Frenchman believes that Capito’s experience will prove invaluable in aiding McLaren’s ongoing drive to move up the grid, having endured a miserable 2015 season.

“The thing is that it’s based on experience,” Boullier said. “We would need anyway some improvement in this package, performance package, especially with Honda. I guess McLaren always we need to be better.

“I think most of the job has been done, but it’s more about the global, let’s say, co-ordination, at maybe a higher political level where I think Jost could bring a bunch of experience.”

Boullier was also asked what impact the departure of Honda head of motorsport Yasuhisa Arai will have on McLaren, and although he remained coy, he said it was inevitable that things would be different working with the incoming Yusuke Hasegawa.

“Well it’s still early days, but I guess everybody at this level of seniority may have his own way of dealing with the programme and the project, so we can expect different way of dealing with it,” Boullier said.

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.