John Booth, Marussia, 2016

Toro Rosso hires former Manor chief John Booth

2016 F1 season

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John Booth has joined Toro Rosso as the team’s new director of racing. Booth founded Manor in 1990 but left their F1 team at the end of last season.

Team principal Franz Tost explained the reason for their latest hiring.

“Formula One is becoming ever more complex with recent changes on the tyre front, car set-up, radio communications and so forth,” said Tost. “Therefore, having a competitive car and talented drivers, both of which we have, on its own is not enough.”

“With his vast experience I am sure John will help the team raise its game and become a more effective force over a race weekend.”

Booth said it is “a great honour to join such a well-established and competitive team as Scuderia Toro Rosso”. “It is a team that has achieved so much in a relatively short space of time,” he added.

Toro Rosso has bases in Italy and the UK. Booth joins a growing contingent of British senior staff members including technical director James Key and team manager Graham Watson. The team currently lies sixth in the constructors’ championship with 17 points.

2016 F1 season

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 14 comments on “Toro Rosso hires former Manor chief John Booth”

    1. Excellent news.

    2. Wow what a great surprise. Isn’t he 70 though? If complexity is the issue as Tost says I’d have thought a younger mind would have been more suited? Anyway good for him, and TR.

      1. Up yours, whippersnapper.

      2. William Jones
        27th April 2016, 7:30

        It’s a myth that the mind gets less able with age. Admittedly, the capacity to learn takes a sharp nosedive in it’s early 20’s at the end of adolescence, but given the choice between a teenager and a hugely experienced 70 year old as director of racing, I would take the experience over capacity to learn any day.

        1. It’s not a myth, and nor is it a choice between a teen and a septuagenarian.

          Researchers found that over the 10-year study, there was a 3.6 percent decline in mental reasoning scores in people who were between the ages of 45 and 49 at the study’s start. There was a 9.6 percent decline in the abilities of men ages 65 to 70 years

          http://www.livescience.com/17780-mental-sharpness-declines-middle-age.html

          I hope it goes well, it just struck me that the complexity Tost talks about means the job needs more than just experience. So it’s great news to have Booth back as I said, but a bit of a surprise.

          1. I think it’s a more of an issue that Booth is a ‘proper racing man’, with more insight into right calls on tactics and such than STR have right now. That’s often an issue they manage to miss out on, and he might help them in that regard.

      1. @flig Yes, 1990.

      2. Yes, infact both Kimi and Lewis won the Formula Renault championship with manor in 2000 and 2003 respectively.
        And a lot more success in the lower formula with drivers that never made it to F1.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manor_Motorsport

        1. I see. Somehow mixed it up with entering F1 and thought it was a mistake. Cool though, I had somehow ignored their history so far, intersting stuff.

    3. “…space of time.” That always kills me!

    4. So Carlos Slim was right when he said that managers are at their peak between 70 and 75… Who woulda thunk it?

      1. You know the old saying “age and treachery beats youth and skill” – spoken as a just turned 70 year old!!!

    5. Bloody brilliant. STR have such incredible drivers and a great little car, just their tactics and ideas are often a problem. Having a man like Booth may well make a difference.

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