Sixty years after Bruce McLaren made the journey from New Zealand to England to establish the company that still bears his name today, two young engineers have followed in his footsteps as part of a scholarship established in his honor. University of Auckland (UoA) mechanical engineering students Sabrina Yarndley and Joshua Cates are the latest Bruce McLaren engineering scholars to be welcomed to McLaren to hone their skills at the Woking-based supercar company.
They were greeted at the McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) in Woking by former UoA alumna Lizzy Grant, herself a former Bruce McLaren engineering scholar in 2019 and now working on battery technologies crucial to the company’s future electrified powertrains. They were also joined by fellow Kiwi Piers Scott, the company’s Executive Director of PR, and Jim Marsh, Chief Transformation and People Officer.
Joshua and Sabrina will be completing a three-month scholarship that will see them working in multiple departments across the company.
Born in Auckland, New Zealand, Bruce McLaren studied there and went on to become an accomplished engineer and innovator as well as a successful racing driver.
Sabrina and Joshua will be based at the iconic MTC and McLaren Production Centres where they will have stints with designers and engineers
He arrived in England in 1958 on a ‘Driver to Europe’ scholarship and founded the racing team that remains one of the world’s most successful names in motorsport. In the 1960s, Bruce also unveiled the first McLaren supercar in the M6GT.
McLaren Automotive was established in 2011 and both Sabrina and Joshua share a passion for high performance engineering and supercars which Bruce encapsulated.
The company has produced some of the world’s most iconic supercars and hypercars such as the P1TM and most recently the Speedtail, Solus GT and Elva roadster which celebrates the M1A and McLaren-Elvas of the 1960s that Bruce helped create.
Sabrina and Joshua will be based at the iconic MTC and McLaren Production Centres where they will have stints with designers and engineers, as well as with marketing and aftersales teams to gain a unique insight into the workings of the 3,000-strong workforce.
“Almost sixty years after Bruce set up in England, it is a privilege to welcome our latest engineering scholars in Sabrina and Joshua to McLaren Automotive. It is wonderful to see Bruce’s vision live on in the supercars that we design and make today and that his legacy continues to inspire the next generation of talent from his home nation.
“We are delighted with the continued collaboration with the University of Auckland that will allow Joshua and Sabrina to see first-hand what goes into creating our supercars and for them to make a contribution to real-world projects. I’m sure Bruce would be proud of the internship which continues to celebrate the strong links between Britain and New Zealand that he epitomized.” Jim Marsh, People and Chief Transformation Officer, McLaren Automotive
“After the young Bruce McLaren completed the first year of his Bachelor of Engineering degree at the University of Auckland and departed for England to pursue his passion six decades ago, few could have foreseen the outstanding success and deep respect he would earn as an automotive designer and engineer, race car driver, team leader, and business founder.
“The Faculty of Engineering and University are honored by our ongoing connection with Bruce’s legacy through the Bruce McLaren Automotive scholarship and internship. We are grateful for McLaren Automotive’s ongoing support and to the generous donors who make this possible – alumni Eric Tracey, Rob Whitehouse and Neil Paton, and Sir Colin Giltrap.
“We are incredibly proud of senior students Sabrina and Joshua who are now embarking on their three-month internships with McLaren. Their skills and passion for engineering, combined with the unique experience of their internships, will fuel our students’ passion for automotive engineering and set them on the road to exciting careers.” Professor Gerard Rowe, Dean of Engineering, University of Auckland