McLaren celebrates 50 years in Formula One 1

McLaren celebrates 50 years in Formula One. Bruce McLaren was only 32 years old when he died testing a car for the Can-Am championship. “I feel life is measured in achievement not in years alone,” he said once.

Images © McLaren

Just after 43 years after Bruce McLaren was killed, McLaren Formula One team celebrates its 50th anniversary.

Ron Dennis, McLaren Group chairman, said:

“McLaren started as the dream of one man, and it’s since grown to encompass the hopes and dreams of more than 2000 men and women, who work as tirelessly as Bruce McLaren himself once did to ensure that everything we do reflects well when compared with everything we’ve ever achieved.

So, our 50th anniversary provides an opportunity for every single McLaren employee to realise that he or she is an utterly crucial part of an organisation with a history and a culture that really mean something.”

McLaren’s headquarters including the F1 factory, designed by architect Sir Norman Foster.

McLaren celebrates 50 years in Formula One (5)

The F1 company now employs some 2,000 workers based in its futuristic factory where the 12C  are built.

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Around McLaren in 50 facts

McLaren is one of the most famous sporting marques worldwide and here are 50 things you may not know about it:

1. We’ve raced in 31 different countries and 6 different continents in Formula 1. The furthest south of the equator we have ever raced is Melbourne for the Australian Grand Prix and the furthest north of the equator was the Swedish Grand Prix held at Anderstorp.

2. McLaren’s longest-serving employee is Ray ‘Tex’ Rowe, who joined Bruce McLaren Motor Racing Ltd in 1963. Tex still works three days a week in Racing’s gearbox shop. The team can still boast at least six employees who joined the team in the 1970s, and more than 30 who joined in the ’80s…

3.  Before anything could be done on the site of the MTC, huge efforts were made to relocate adders from the area. Four foot plastic fences were erected around an area about a kilometre square, and corrugated iron laid on the ground to warm the earth and attract them to the surface.

4. Every visitor always asks how deep the MTC lake is: it’s almost three metres deep and contains more than 50,000m3 of water.

5. We use around 1000 litres of chrome paint per year on the car. There also needs to be 48 logos on each car, which get replaced regularly so around 2000 logos are used per year. The hardest to produce and apply are the Vodafone roundels on the sidepods as they are distorted but look correct when applied.

6. Some noteworthy McLaren 50s: our 50th race win – Monaco 1986 (Alain Prost), fastest lap – Phoenix 1989 (Ayrton Senna), and pole position – Spa 1989 (Ayrton Senna, who else?),

7. The MTC is constructed from over 5,000 tonnes of steelwork and uses 43,000m3 of glass throughout the building. The MTC’s footprint is big enough to house nine Boeing 747 Jumbo jets.

8. You have to push a mower for approximately 20 miles to mow the turf just once at the McLaren Technology Centre.  Between May and September it is cut at least twice a week – that’s 9,234 miles of lawn-mowing since the MTC opened in 2004!

9. Our longest-serving driver was David Coulthard, who drove for us between 1996 and 2004 – he started 150 grands prix for McLaren-Mercedes.

10. Our first works F1 chassis was 1965’s M2A/1. Since then, we’ve built more than 250 racing cars; our 50th was 1979’s M29/3, chassis 100 was an MP4/5B from 1990, chassis 200 was 2002’s MP4-17-2, and our 250th was the MP4-24-5 from 2009. Our four current MP4-28 tubs are numbers 263-266.

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source McLaren Group