Former Porsche LMP1 chief Andreas Seidl is set to take up a senior role within McLaren’s Formula 1 operation in the near future, Crash.net understands.

Seidl oversaw Porsche’s return to the premier class of sports car racing in 2014 with the Porsche 919 Hybrid car that went on to win three consecutive 24 Hours of Le Mans from 2015 to 2017, as well as claiming every FIA World Endurance Championship LMP1 title in that period.

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Porsche withdrew from LMP1 at the end of 2017 in order to shift its attention to its planned Formula E entry in 2019, which Seidl was set to lead as the marque's new overall head of motorsport.

However, Seidl suddenly left his Porsche last month after six years, and has since been linked with a move to an F1 team for 2019.

Sources have now indicated to Crash.net that Seidl is due to take up a senior position at McLaren in the near future, overseeing its F1 racing activities.

Seidl is poised to join a management team that was restructured in July following the departure of racing director Eric Boullier ahead of the British Grand Prix.

Zak Brown assumed the role of CEO of McLaren Racing, leading its management team, with Gil de Ferran becoming sporting director. James Key is set to join McLaren in 2019 as its new technical director, but Boullier’s role has not been directly filled.

Following a request for comment, a McLaren spokesperson told Crash.net: “With respect, our policy is to never comment on speculation.”

Seidl has experience in F1, having worked with BMW Sauber between 2006 and 2009. He then moved to BMW’s DTM team following the manufacturer’s exit from F1, helping lead its charge to the title upon returning to the touring car category in 2012.

Seidl worked with outgoing Toro Rosso F1 driver Brendon Hartley during his time at Porsche. Harley won two WEC drivers’ crowns and one Le Mans title working under Seidl, and spoke warmly of his former boss amid speculation of a move into F1 over the Abu Dhabi race weekend.

“I have a huge amount of respect for Andreas, I learned a lot from him,” Hartley said.

“He was definitely the best team principal I’ve ever worked with, and was an integral part of the LMP1 programme, and I really enjoyed working with him.

“I don’t know what his future is, but I really wish him all the best, and whatever it is, it’s fully deserved."

 

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