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Old 11 Feb 2018, 13:17 (Ref:3800501)   #7
krt917
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Hi all,

First off, apologies for not posting here more often. Long-termers will recall I used to do so, but the day job takes up rather a lot of time these days!

I wanted to reply to the McLaren/Zak Brown question, which is an understandable one given Brown's dual role, one he is very conscious of.

I can confirm Zak has no influence on the editorial content of the magazine. The only direct contact I have had with him on the subject is when I asked him if we could do an interview and photoshoot with Fernando Alonso at Daytona. In other words, the Jan 25 issue was my idea, on the basis that Alonso's Indy 500 story was one of the biggest things of 2017, we don't often get proper slots with him, and I think it's a cool story. Not everyone will agree, but it was my call, not Zak's.

As for last week's issue, have people actually read Ben Anderson's piece, or even the cover? Yes, Zak is interviewed, but we're coming at it much from the negative angle of McLaren really needing to deliver now that the Honda saga is over. If not, there is a real chance it could slip into the Williams position of midfield battler. That wouldn't be great for F1 - I am sure we'll all agree we'd like to see more teams other than Mercedes and Ferrari (and possibly Red Bull) fighting for wins.

Ben's final line is: "McLaren must escape decline soon, or else surely the damage will be permanent." We also did a McLaren 'Crisis' cover on the March 23rd issue last year, when our F1 guys fathomed just how much trouble the team was in. I don't think Zak would have been too pleased about either, but I have received no pressure to soften our approach.

Along with George Russell and Dan Ticktum, Lando Norris is one of the most exciting British talents currently on the verge of F1, which is reflected in the coverage. Of course, had he not been Alonso's team-mate at Daytona (where he, unsurprisingly, excelled), he would not have been part of that piece.

As regards other teams, we had a Red Bull one the week before last and will likely have one in the near future. Ferrari and Mercedes will of course follow, though they tend to get lots of covers when the season starts thanks to all the winning!

As an aside, those that know me will also know I endeavour to put non-F1 on the cover when I get the chance - our Le Mans preview and report were last year and I've put the Goodwood Revival on the cover for the past two years. Sadly, I have to be very careful what I select and when as most non-F1 covers result in a fall in sales.

I'll not go on, but please do drop me an email at kevin.turner@autosport.com if you have any further thoughts, questions or criticisms. My only request is that they be constructive and based on what is actually in the magazine, rather than perception from what it was like 10, 15 (or whatever!) years ago.

Many thanks,
Kevin Turner
Autosport magazine editor
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