More Management Changes At BMW: Hauser Replaced As BMW's Motorsport Director

A little over a week ago, the BMW World Superbike team dropped a bombshell on the WSBK paddock by releasing team manager Davide Tardozzi, one of the most widely respected team managers in World Superbikes - and beyond - and widely credited with much of the success of Ducati's World Superbike success, where he was team manager before joining BMW. Tardozzi was released over "differences of opinion about the way the team should be organized," with rumors that Tardozzi and BMW Motorsport Director Berthold Hauser were clashing over the way the team should be run.

Tardozzi was not the only victim of that encounter, it has now emerged. The BMW team today issued a press release announcing that Hauser is also to be replaced, with immediate effect. Hauser's place is to be taken by Bernhard Gobmeier, a former engineer who is currently in charge of chassis development at BMW Motorrad. The move is part of a "fundamental realignment," as the press release describes it, which suggests that more staff may be affected in future. 

Below is the official press release from BMW:


Changes at the top at BMW Motorrad Motorsport.

BMW Motorrad sets its course for the future in the FIM Superbike World Championship. Munich/Stephanskirchen, 12th October 2010. BMW Motorrad Motorsport is heading into the future with a new management structure. Bernhard Gobmeier will replace Berthold Hauser as BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director with immediate effect. The move comes two weeks after BMW Motorrad and Team Manager Davide Tardozzi agreed to part company by mutual consent. Gobmeier will be responsible for all BMW Motorrad Motorsport activities, including the company's factory involvement in the Superbike World Championship.

"I'm pleased to announce this fundamental realignment," says Hendrik von Kuenheim, General Director of BMW Motorrad. "The new structure puts BMW Motorrad Motorsport in extremely good shape to meet the challenges of the future. Bernhard Gobmeier has filled a variety of roles within the BMW Group over the years and brings his experience in motor sport to the job. I'm in no doubt that he will continue to take BMW Motorrad Motorsport forwards with his analytical and structured approach. He will bring himself up to speed with the current situation as quickly as possible and put the necessary measures in place."

And von Kuenheim continues: "I would like to thank Berthold Hauser for all his good work over recent years. He can look back on some impressive successes in his career as BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director. Under his leadership Richard Sainct won the Paris-Dakar Rally in 1999 and 2000 as BMW Motorrad made its return to the event. And Berthold Hauser was also responsible for the team's successful start to life in the Superbike World Championship and its first podium finishes. He will continue to perform a managerial role for BMW Motorrad."

New BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director Gobmeier, adds: "I'm looking forward to taking on this new challenge in a top-class race series with a professional racing team and two strong riders. Our aim is clear: to build consistently on the positive foundations which Berthold Hauser and his team have put in place over recent years, so that we can be in a position to win races on merit as soon as possible."

Gobmeier, a qualified engineer, has worked for BMW AG for more than 16 years, during which time he has performed a variety of roles. In 1994 and 1995 he was responsible for overhauling the company's sales activities for BMW M vehicles in North America and restructuring its racing activities in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) with the BMW M3 GT. The native Bavarian then filled various management positions within BMW M GmbH between 1996 and 2008, before taking over as head of chassis development at BMW Motorrad in 2008.

Back to top

Comments

Echoes of a distant conflict.Fire your best generals,when you lose a battle,primarily because you never adhered to their professional advice based on their experience and accomplishments.
My 2 cents to BMW.Leave the cheque book in the hands of the accountants and leave the racing in the hands of the racer's.Engineers are best left doing what they do best...solving technical issues.
Gobmeier as I understand the post,accomplished in marketing and saloon car racing in North America.
Well, his credentials should surely inspire confidence in Troy and Leon!!!
Knee jerk reaction to Aprilia's massive achievement ? I think so.

With this change I'd guess there was doubt from the highest levels as to where all that money was going. Maybe with the amount they've spent the top bosses expected wins by now. While improvements were steadily coming in the BMW garage, full success was not delivered.

Aprillia won in year 2. BMW well not so much on the WSBK level, they did however win easily over the competition in SS. Too bad the followers aren't of SS instead of WSB.

It is likely BMW needed to make some changes whether they changed the right one is to be seen. This happens in almost all forms of sports fire the coach and start over after 2 bad seasons.

My opinion is they should have pined for Mat Mladin and Pitt on a decent satellite team, Give them solid BMW backing, pick up a good manager, maybe Kevin Schwantz, Rainey, kenny or any solid manager/racer then try to lure Haslam, Fabrizio to their team and make a 3 bike team, Corser is good for consistency but I don't think his age and fitness will let him go race distance to a victory. Maybe use mladin and pitt as a test bed to not compromise the consistency of the factory bikes that way you get around testing deficiencies.

Xaus was to banged up to be useful and he crashed way to much. He missed races, tests, practices, and often was not fast enough to get usable data to the engineers

This is my .02, I just feel they had to few and not enough riders.

Ape has tons of knowledge and history in racing, BMW is about 15-20 Yrs behind not to mention from scratch electronics.

I think we can all agree that BMW should not only fire the remaining members of their WSBK team (riders, mechanics, data guys, catering staff, etc.. etc..) but that they should fire all remaining employees in the whole of BMW Corporate, from the Board of Directors including CEO himself, to the cleaning staff (who probably aren't direct employees of BMW but contracted to maintain the tidiness of their facilities).

In lieu of this mass exodus and vacuum of power, I unilaterally declare that I should be appointed Head Big Cheese of BMW Corporate and all of its holdings and David be appointed as my right hand No. 2 Head Big Cheese.

I think we can all agree that this is not only a fair and equitable decision but that it ensures the long term security and viability of the corporation and its employees (of which there are currently none having fired them all, save David and myself) but that it continues to return long term shareholder value through prudent management and leadership.

Sincerely.

Arc
BMW Corporate Head Big Cheese

BMW seems to be following the trend that even they themselves have set by cleaning house and not really addressing the internal issues.

I used to work for them here in U.S and they can be a bunch or frankfurters, although Berti is a great guy. Glad I'm not called "head cheese"...