Based on his experience of him with BMW in DTM, former-F1 star, Gerhard Berger is doubtful that Mike Krack is the man to turn Aston Martin around.
Krack was announced as team principal by the Silverstone-based outfit days after it had confirmed the departure of Otmar Szafnauer, who has since admitted that following the appointment of Martin Whitmarsh was fearful of a ‘too many cooks’ situation at the team similar to when Ross Brawn was still with Mercedes.
Krack joined Aston Martin from BMW’s global motorsport operation, where he was in charge of its Formula E, GT and IMSA programmes, as well as future Sportscar programmes. Prior to that, he had worked in a senior motorsport role for Porsche and previously worked for over a decade in F1 with Sauber and BMW-Sauber, where he had worked with a young Sebastian Vettel.
However, ten-time GP winner Gerhard Berger, who was at one time joint owner of the Toro Rosso team and now runs DTM, says that Krack is not up to F1 material, certainly not in terms of a team with front of the grid ambitions.
“Let’s see what can be done,” he tells YouTube channel Formel1.de, “but when I watched what was done in DTM, I just don’t see the way forward for Aston Martin with him.
“In all the years I’ve been there now, BMW has never been really consistently competitive,” the Austrian continues. “You could see always, they’d be on the starting grid in a good position one day and they didn’t know why they are were there today. Next day they would be in the end of the grid and they didn’t know why they were at the end of the grid.
“When you watch it and you see this over a longer period, you question the people behind it, and he was leading it, the project,” adds Berger, who contested 210 Grands Prix with ATS, Benetton, Ferrari and McLaren.
“And this is DTM,” he continues. “DTM is great, but F1 is a different league. Here, you need to be the best of the best in the world. I don’t see this.
“Sorry, I was a bit direct, but it’s just somebody asked me. That’s my opinion.”
While he doubts the ability of Krack, Berger has nothing but praise for McLaren’s decision to bring Andreas Seidl on board, a move that possibly inspired Aston Martin.
“McLaren were in an extremely difficult situation and then hit the bullseye with Andreas Seidl on the technical side,” he says. “Then other good people came in and all of a sudden the team are back in the mix for victories. I don’t see that at Aston Martin at the moment.
“I know that putting a team together in Formula 1 is extremely difficult. There are only a handful of people who are really great with the technology and good at other topics that you can then get the team to the front.”