F1's technical director James to leave role next month

Formula 1 stalwart Andrew James, who has most recently been its technical director after a 25-year career with the championship organiser, is to step down from his role next month.

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James has played an instrumental role in creating and implementing many of the technical systems and processes that have helped make F1 such a global hit – including the establishment of its state-of-the-art broadcast centre.

As well as helping ensure the sport remained at the cutting edge of technology and never missed a beat during his near three-decade involvement, he helped see it through a number of particular challenges.

One such moment came at the 2019 Japanese Grand Prix when James had to lead the relocation of F1's Media and Technology Centre because of a typhoon threat. Had he failed, the event would have had to be called off.

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One of James' most recent efforts was helping deliver F1's transition to rely on remote operations facilities for its coverage of grands prix weekends. The change was prompted by the coronavirus pandemic, but will now likely become a more permanent solution longer term.

Following a restructuring of F1's Media and Technology Centre at its Biggin Hill HQ, however, it has been mutually agreed that James will step down from his position at the end of next month.

Speaking about his imminent departure, James said he was proud of everything he had achieved in F1 – and hoped he had left the sport in good shape.

"During my time at F1 I have had the privilege of undertaking exciting projects working with a truly great team of people who have shown the creativity, skill, passion, perseverance and dedication that has enabled the business to deliver so spectacularly," he said.

"I am very proud to have been a part of that. I would like to thank every member of staff, past and present, for their support but, in particular, the teams I have worked with directly who unfailingly delivered on the targets which were set both by the organisation and ourselves.

"Now I am moving on, but I hope I have left my mark and I hope that the business and the staff continue to deliver outstanding products that excite and engage the fans."

F1 managing director of motorsport Ross Brawn was full of praise for the efforts that James had made during his time involved in F1.

"Andrew has been a pillar of our organisation for more than 25 years and his contribution has been immense," explained Brawn.

"We wouldn't be where we are today without his ability, commitment and dedication. I would like to personally thank Andrew for his time here and wish him all the very best for his future plans."

It is unclear whether James has already decided on his next step, but his vast experience of F1 would make him an obvious target for a team.

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