‘Fred Vasseur put himself forward for Mattia Binotto’s Ferrari job back in June already’

Michelle Foster
Fred Vasseur and Mattia Binotto speaking. Bahrain March 2019.

Alfa Romeo team boss Fred Vasseur speaking with Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto in the paddock. Bahrain March 2019.

Confirmed as Ferrari’s new team boss on Tuesday morning, Fred Vasseur reportedly “proposed himself” for Mattia Binotto’s job back in June already.

Ferrari announced late last month that they were searching for a new team boss to replace Binotto from January next season after the Italian handed in his resignation after the season.

Unofficially, it’s been said, it had already been decided with Vasseur agreeing a deal with Ferrari over the summer.

According to formu1a.uno, ‘Frederic Vasseur has always been the favourite, also the result of a pre-agreement signed at the end of summer.

‘The first approaches date back to many weeks earlier, in June, with the French manager who proposing himself knowing that he was no longer in Sauber’s plans, once the purchase of the team by Audi was completed.’

The conversation ‘intensified from the Hungarian GP’, which was the final race before the summer break with former driver turned pundit Ralf Schumacher claiming Binotto was in “danger during the summer break” of losing his job.

He didn’t, with Ferrari president John Elkann saying Binotto had his support while Binotto told PlanetF1.com that it “is not down to me to decide” if he continues with the team into 2023. It was in the end, he was the one to hand in his resignation with speculation he had seen the writing on the wall.

As for Vasseur, he told RTB at the Abu Dhabi finale: “I won’t tell you anything, but you’ll know soon enough.”

Formu1a.uno added that ‘ultimately the pre-agreement signed at the end of the summer now appears to have been perfected even if there is no official timings yet for the announcement.’

That announcement came on Tuesday morning, Alfa Romeo announcing Vasseur’s departure while minutes later Ferrari confirmed him as their new team boss.

Meanwhile Sky Italia’s Carlo Vanzini is claiming Simone Resta will be leaving Haas to return to Ferrari as the new technical director.

Ferrari are also tweaking the strategy department, who came in for a lot of stick with their bad calls during the 2022 season.

“There will be a different hierarchy inside the team, roles that will be clear,” said Vanzini. “Ravin Jain will have more power regarding the strategies. The race engineers will have more responsibilities.

“We know Ricciardo Adami, who is very experienced, while Charles’s engineer, Xavi, who is younger, will have more responsibilities, he will not only be a messenger between the remote garage and the driver.”

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