John Barnard (born in 1946) is a British engineer. Specialized in the mechanical sports, it was one of the most famous technicians of the world of the Formule 1 in the years 1980 and 1990, and designed victorious single-seaters on behalf of the stable McLaren, Ferrari and Benetton. Since 2003, John Barnard is the chief technical officer of the stable of Kenny Roberts in MotoGP.
BiographyGraduate of the university of Watford, John Barnard carries out his professional beginnings at the end of the years 1960 in the manufacturer Lola Cars, where it takes part in the design of small single-seaters (Formula Vee, Formula SuperVee) as well as prototypes engaged in the series CanAm.
In 1972, it joined the Formule 1 and the stable McLaren, then directed by Teddy Mayer. As a right-hand man of the chief technical officer Gordon Coppuck, it contributes to conceive McLaren M23, which will become world champion in 1974 with Emerson Fittipaldi. In 1975, it is recruited by the Parnelli stable, but does not manage to save the American stable, which disappears at the beginning of 1976. Contacted by Chaparral Bus, it draws famous Chaparral 2K with ground effect with which Johnny Rutherford gains into 1980 the 500 Miles of Indianapolis. This success makes it possible Barnard to return in the foreground. It is approached by Ron Dennis, which then plans to reach Formula 1 with its stable Project Four. It then starts to work on a revolutionary single-seater, with the carbon hull. At the end of the year, Project Four amalgamates with the dying woman McLaren stable, whose Barnard becomes the new chief technical officer. Under its impulse, McLaren joins again with success and takes down two world titles of the manufacturers (in 1984 and 1985) and three world titles of the pilots (Niki Lauda in 1984, Alain Prost in 1985 and 1986).
Become the most famous engineer of Formula 1, Barnard does not resist the gold bridge only makes him the Scuderia Ferrari, then at the bottom of the hole, in 1987. Its statute even enables him to lay down rather unusual conditions with its arrival since it obtains to be able to work for Ferrari while remaining in England, within a technical antenna (GTO, for Guildford Technical Office) financed with high expenses by the Italian team. In spite of results in regular progression, Scuderia will be able nothing to make against McLaren-Honda. The best results intervene in 1990 with Ferrari 640 (conceived by Barnard, but developed by others since it left Scuderia at the end of 1989) with which Prost finishes vice-champion of the world.
At the end of 1989, Barnard joined Benetton. Even if it intervenes on Benetton B190, mainly the work of Rory Byrne, its first true design is Benetton B191, which in spite of an interesting potential proves far from being the so much hoped weapon. Its relations with the director of the stable Flavio Briatore being increasingly conflict, he is dismissed the shortly after the GP of Canada 1991, which ironically, was gained by Nelson Piquet over B191.
From return to Ferrari in 1993, it again obtains the right to direct the technical department starting from a delocalized antenna (Ferrari Design and Development). But again, if the results of the Italian team set out again slowly with the rise, they are not truly at the level of the statute of Barnard and the budget of the team. At the conclusion of the season 1996, Jean Todt reorganizes in-depth the technical department and replaces John Barnard by Ross Brawn with the technical direction. To note however that Ferrari of 1997, mainly the work of Barnard, will make it possible Michael Schumacher to fight for the world title until the ultimate race of the season with Jerez.
In 1997, John Barnard is engaged by the small stable Arrows, which posts great ambitions since its repurchase by Tom Walkinshaw the previous year. But except some blows of glare (whose second place of Damon Hill with the GP of Hungary 1997), the results pain to take off and association Barnard-Walkinshaw is not long in beating wing, and leads to a rupture in 1998. With the head of its company B3 Technologies (which is actually from the antenna Ferrari Design and Development, repurchased in Scuderia), Barnard collaborates at the time of the following seasons with the French stable Prost Grand Prix, but without notable results.
Since 2003, John Barnard is the chief technical officer of the stable of Kenny Roberts in MotoGP.
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