‘Binotto must manage unusual Vettel situation’

Michelle Foster

Knowing 2020 is Sebastian Vettel’s last year with Ferrari, Piero Ferrari says Mattia Binotto will need to “objectively” manage that situation.

Earlier this month Vettel set the 2021 driver market alight when he and Ferrari announced they would be parting ways at the end of this season.

The German revealed that there was no longer a “common desire” to work together.

Instead Carlos Sainz will partner Charles Leclerc for 2021 and 2022.

The early announcement shocked many including Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff who was quick to point out that it means three drivers, including McLaren-bound Daniel Ricciardo, will be working with their teams for a full season knowing they are leaving.

It is a situation that could prove uncomfortable with fans questioning whether the driver that is leaving will automatically be forced into a number two role.

Ferrari, the son of Ferrari found Enzo, admits it will be a difficult one for Scuderia team boss Binotto to manage.

He told Bologna’s Il Resto del Carlino newspaper: “I have faith in the choices that have been made.

“In Charles Leclerc we have a young man who is a symbol of hope and enthusiasm. I am optimistic.

“As for Sebastian Vettel, Mattia Binotto must be good at managing an objectively difficult and unusual situation, given that the driver will leave at the end of the season.

“I don’t know how my father would handle the situation, but he always said that the company matters more than any employee, even more than the best driver.”

Looking ahead to the 2020 season, which is expected to begin in July, Ferrari is hoping this will be the year that the Scuderia take the fight to Mercedes for the World titles.

“First of all I hope that the engines will fire up in July in Austria,” he said.

“It won’t be easy to beat Mercedes, but we will never stop trying and our fans know it.”

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