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New senior technical director for Honda 20 Jun 2006

Shuhei Nakamoto (JPN) Honda Racing Development Engineering Director.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 6, Spanish Grand Prix, Practice Day, Barcelona, Spain, 12 May 2006

Honda have appointed Shuhei Nakamoto to the new position of senior technical director, while discussions take place concerning current technical director Geoff Willis’s role with the team.

Nakamoto, formerly engineering director for Honda Racing Development, has been a key part of the company’s Formula One involvement for the past six years and has also been a member of the team’s management board since Honda acquired full ownership last December.

His appointment follows a particularly difficult spell for the team, which has seen the Japanese squad struggling for both race pace and reliability. They are currently a lonely fourth in the constructors’ standings, having scored just a single podium in 2006.

"Honda has set itself some very tough targets for its Formula One team and made a considerable investment in order to achieve them, so we have to ensure that we do everything necessary to pursue those objectives,” said the
team’s CEO, Nick Fry, of the new appointment.

“Shuhei Nakamoto has an excellent record of achievement with Honda and we have confidence that his appointment, together with our investments at the Brackley HQ, will help us towards our goal."

Prior to his Formula One involvement, Nakamoto enjoyed a highly successful 17-year career in motorbike competition with Honda. Willis, meanwhile, has been with the team since joining them in their BAR days back in 2002. He was
formerly chief aerodynamicist at Williams.