Multiple World Rally Championship title-winning team M-Sport has been forced to make significant redundancies due to the coronavirus-hit motorsport season.
M-Sport managing director Malcolm Wilson admitted taking the decision to lose 63 of his 238-strong Dovenby Hall workforce was the hardest in his career.
“I don’t mind telling you, it’s the toughest thing I’ve known in all my time in the business,” he said to DirtFish.
“I’ve been trading for more than 40 years and it’s never been as hard as it is right now. But we have to do this to safeguard the future of the company.
“You know me, I’m all about the people in this business, they’re my first concern and to lose this number is terrible.”
In addition to the lack of rallying competition, Bentley has scaled back its GT racing commitment and Jaguar’s Formula E-supporting I-PACE series has been canned, both programs that are under M-Sport’s roof.
“It’s not just rallying, it’s everything,” said Wilson. “Like I said, it’s tougher than ever.
“But, we’ve been in tight situations before and come through and that’s the commitment right now – we will do what we have to do to come through this at the other end and protect as many jobs as we can.”
It’s hoped that opening M-Sport’s cutting-edge Evaluation Centre could stimulate another 100 jobs. The Cumbrian firm’s 10,700m² facility and test track is due to open in the fall.