Tuesday | 30 Aug 2016

Smeets named new VW Motorsport boss

Sven Smeets has been appointed Jost Capito's replacement as Managing Director of Volkswagen Motorsport as part of a wider management restructure.

Former WRC co-driver Smeets (44) will take over on 1 September 2016, following Capito's exit to become CEO of the McLaren Formula 1 team.  

Smeets, from Belgium, has been with Volkswagen Motorsport since 2012. He joined as WRC Team Manager and took on the role of Sporting Director in the middle of 2016. In his new role he will be responsible for all of Volkswagen's motorsport activities, including its World Rally Championship programme.

Volkswagen board member Dr. Frank Welsch said: “We are delighted to be able to introduce a man with a vast wealth of management experience at the top of Volkswagen Motorsport, in the form of Sven Smeets.

"We are confident that we will be able to continue our success story in the World Rally Championship and the strategic development of our motorsport projects with Sven and the rest of the management team at the helm."

There are promotions too for Technical Director François-Xavier Demaison and Director of Engine Development Dr. Donatus Wichelhaus both of whom move up into the Management Board of Volkswagen Motorsport.

Demaison joined Volkswagen in 2012 and has been responsible for the technical development of the Polo R WRC. As Technical Director since June 2016, he is now also responsible for all Volkswagen’s other car projects within the field of motorsport.

Wichelhaus has been a member of the management team since 2005. He took over as Director of Engine Development on 1 June and is now responsible for the development of all of Volkswagen's motorsport engines.


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