NTT INDYCAR SERIES veterans Gavin Ward and Brian Barnhart will take up management positions with the Arrow McLaren SP team from the 2023 season, team officials announced on October 4.
Ward will take on the role of Race Director after joining the team in July 2022 as Director of Track Engineering. Barnhart is a new addition to AMSP as Managing Director.
AMSP will field three cars in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES in 2023, for returning team veterans Pato O’Ward and Felix Rosenqvist and team newcomer Alexander Rossi, winner of the 100th Indianapolis 500 in 2016.
“This management team has decades of racing success, each bringing their own expertise to the group, which will be a differentiator for the team as we move to a three-car lineup in 2023 and continue to build on our legacy in the sport,” said Zak Brown, CEO of McLaren Racing. “Gavin has made a solid impact in his few months with the team, and we welcome Brian and the years of INDYCAR experience he brings to the team. »
Ward, a native of Toronto, will lead the technical performance team consisting of Max Neyron (Director of Operations), Nick Snyder (Director of Performance) and Billy Vincent (Director of Competition).
The communicator for O’Ward’s car and the #5 Chevrolet Arrow McLaren SP is still being finalized, while Vincent will retain his radio role with Rosenqvist for the #6 Chevrolet Arrow McLaren SP. Barnhart will be the communicator for Rossi and the #7 Chevrolet Arrow McLaren SP, a role he filled with Rossi and Andretti Autosport during the 2022 season.
Ward came to AMSP after a four-year stint with Team Penske, where he was Josef Newgarden’s engineer. Ward worked for nine years in Formula 1 with Red Bull Racing before joining Team Penske in 2018.
« I am honored to step into this role and work alongside the other leaders to continue to elevate Arrow McLaren SP and our competitiveness on the track, » said Ward. « Max, Nick, Billy and I worked really well together last season, so we’ve already established an impressive baseline which will lead to a smooth start to 2023. I’m really excited to see what the team will do and to welcome Brian to the team, too. »
Barnhart brings decades of experience in the sport to AMSP. He started out as a pit crew member and chief mechanic for teams in the 1980s and 1990s, including Al Unser Jr.’s Wales Racing team which won the Indianapolis 500 in 1992.
A native of Indianapolis, Mr. Barnhart then moved into the administrative side of the sport in the mid-1990s, serving in various leadership positions with INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway until 2017, including as INDYCAR President and Race Director.
He returned to the teams side in 2017, becoming chairman of Harding Racing before joining Andretti Autosport in 2020 when Harding Steinbrenner Racing merged with Team Andretti.
“I am delighted to join McLaren Racing as Managing Director of Arrow McLaren SP,” Barnhart said. “The team has made incredible progress challenging top teams for the championship over the past two seasons. AMSP is brimming with talent, from its drivers to mechanics and everything in between, and I am honored to join them. »