DICK JOHNSON Racing has announced a restructure of its outfit ahead of the 2021 season, including a revised engineering line-up and new team principal.
The changes follow confirmation late last year that former majority owner Team Penske and drivers Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard were all moving on.
Engineering whiz Ludo Lacroix has been assigned to young star Anton De Pasquale, while Richard Harris will pair with the team’s other new driving recruit, Will Davison.
ENTRY LIST: 2021 Repco Supercars Championship
Lacroix and Harris worked together on McLaughlin’s all-conquering entry in recent years, with the former credited for much of the three-time champion’s success.
Coulthard’s former engineer Mark Fenning remains part of the team and is said to be taking “a senior role on both cars”.
The management of the team has also been tweaked, with Ben Croke promoted from team manager to team principal and Josh Silcock stepping into Croke’s previous role.
Ryan Story, who co-owns the team with founder Johnson, is now titled chairman and CEO, having formerly been managing director and will step back from some day-to-day operational duties.
“We have a very ambitious growth strategy which encapsulates not only Supercars but our organisation as a whole,” said Story.
“We’ve given great consideration as to how we go racing, how we can operate better on the ground, and how we can ensure the people with the appropriate skill sets and experience are in the right roles.
“At a later stage, we look forward to announcing our Advisory Board that will aid and assist the senior management of the race team.
“It will comprise a group of people who possess enormous levels of experience both in motorsport and in business.
“Dick and I are very proud owners of his eponymous racing team, and in taking on the Chairman and CEO roles, it’s not dissimilar to what I’ve been doing in years past since 2013.
“But it does change some of the responsibilities for the day-to-day operations of the race team itself.
“In Ben Croke, we have a guy who’s been involved in motor racing not just here in Australia in Supercars, but in Europe as well.
“He’s got an immense amount of experience, and he’s been with us for a long time. I think that now is the right time for him to step up.”
Story added of the engineering lineup: “The roles of Ludo Lacroix (Competition Director) and Nick Hughes (Technical Director) remain unchanged.
“Mark Fenning also remains as a key member of the trackside engineering group moving to a senior role across both cars, while also focusing on the design and development of the Gen3 Mustang alongside Perry Kapper.
“We have a very solid team which will continue to build the Dick Johnson Racing legacy.
“In terms of our engineering lineup for next year, we look forward to having Ludo engineering Anton De Pasquale and taking on a young driver similar to when he first joined our team in 2017 alongside Scott McLaughlin.
“Richard Harris will step up to a race engineering role to run Will Davison’s Shell V-Power Racing Team Mustang.”
DJR key staff overview
• Ryan Story – Chairman and CEO
• Ben Croke – Team Principal
• Perry Kapper – Chief Engineer
• Ron Young – Chief Financial Officer and Company Secretary
• Josh Silcock – Team Manager
• Ludo Lacroix – Race Engineer for Anton De Pasquale
• Richard Harris – Race Engineer for Will Davison