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Haug steps down as Mercedes-Benz motorsport chief

updated 8:40 AM EST, Fri December 14, 2012
German Norbert Haug became head of Mercedes-Benz motorsport in 1990.
German Norbert Haug became head of Mercedes-Benz motorsport in 1990.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Norbert Haug steps down as head of Mercedes-Benz motorsport
  • Haug assumed the role with the German manufacturer in 1990
  • He has overseen Mercedes-Benz's contribution to six F1 world championships
  • The German also played a role in Mercedes rebirth as an F1 team after a 55-year wait

(CNN) -- German Norbert Haug is to step down as head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport after over 20 years in the position and a plethora of titles.

Haug assumed the position in 1990 and the German manufacturer has since enjoyed success in a range of motorsport disciplines, including Formula One and Touring Cars.

One of Haug's biggest achievements was to oversee Mercedes' rebirth as an F1 team in 2010 after 55 years out of the sport, though the team has only won one Grand Prix over the last two years.

"I would like to thank the best car company in the world for more than 22 years, which never had a single moment without passion for me," Haug said in a statement on the manufacturer's official website.

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"Since 1991, we had tremendous achievements and wins, for which I want to thank all of my colleagues. Unfortunately, with one victory in 2012 since founding our own Formula One works team in 2010, we couldn't fulfil our own expectations.

"However, we have taken the right steps to be successful in the future. Our team and our drivers will do everything to achieve these goals."

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Mercedes' F1 prospects for 2013 have been boosted by the arrival of 2008 world champion Lewis Hamilton from the company's partner and fellow constructor McLaren, while triple world champion Niki Lauda will liaise between the board and the team in a non-executive director role.

Hamilton will team up with Germany's Nico Rosberg, who picked up the marque's sole win of 2012 at April's Chinese Grand Prix, following the retirement of seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher.

"Norbert Haug was the face of the Mercedes-Benz Motorsport programme for more than 20 years," said Dr. Dieter Zetsche, head of Mercedes-Benz cars.

"For me, he put his stamp on a whole era and, as a highlight, he was responsible for the successful comeback of the Silver Arrows to Formula One."

During Haug's time at the helm, Mercedes-Benz has contributed to six F1 world championship triumphs -- five for McLaren and one for Brawn GP, which Mercedes-Benz purchased in 2009.

In DTM, a German touring car competition, Mercedes has clinched 32 titles since Haug took over, winning 54% of all DTM races.

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