Official: Binotto leaves Ferrari


Ferrari has announced that it has accepted the resignation of Mattia Binotto who will leave his role as team principal on December 31.

"I would like to thank Mattia for his many great contributions over 28 years with Ferrari and particularly for leading the team back to a position of competitiveness during this past year," said Benedetto Vigna. "As a result, we are in a strong position to renew our challenge, above all for our amazing fans around the world, to win the ultimate prize in motorsport. Everyone here at the Scuderia and in the wider Ferrari community wishes Mattia well for the future."

"With the regret that this entails, I have decided to conclude my collaboration with Ferrari," added Binotto. "I am leaving a company that I love, which I have been part of for 28 years, with the serenity that comes from the conviction that I have made every effort to achieve the objectives set. I leave a united and growing team.

"A strong team, ready, I'm sure, to achieve the highest goals, to which I wish all the best for the future. I think it is right to take this step at this time as hard as this decision has been for me. I would like to thank all the people at the Gestione Sportiva who have shared this journey with me, made up of difficulties but also of great satisfaction."

According to the team, the process is underway to identify a team principal and is expected to be finalised in the new year.

Not for the first time, Ferrari is throwing out the baby with the bathwater... Binotto is a brilliant engineer and should never have been given the role of team principal in the first place.

Having joined Ferrari in 1995, he was there for the golden era during which Michael Schumacher, ably assisted by Jean Todt, Rory Byrne and Ross Brawn won five successive titles.

In 2013, he was appointed head of the engine department, and chief technical officer in July 2016, replacing James Allison.

In 2019, he was promoted to team principal, replacing Maurizio Arrivabene, and though the season saw a far more competitive Ferrari, the season was overshadowed by the legality of the Italian team's power unit, a situation made even worse by the fact that it subsequently reached a private deal to keep details of the governing body's investigation secret.

Whatever the whys and wherefores of the engine scandal, Ferrari went from having the best engine of 2019 to arguably the worst in 2020.

2021 saw a revival of the team's fortunes, and at the start of this year the Maranello outfit appeared genuine championship contenders.

However poor strategic calls, reliability and numerous episodes of what Ferrari do best saw the Italian team lose its way, only just managing to hold on to the runner-up spot.

Perhaps in Binotto Ferrari saw another Mauro Forghieri, a brilliant engineer who was able to organise and lead the team, however the sport has changed in recent decades and while genius engineers are still a vital part of the package, team principals have to be far more political, Machiavellian even, and Binotto was anything but.

Alfa Romeo boss Frederick Vasseur has been linked with the role and would appear to be a good choice, however, despite his insistence that he is heading to his sofa we wouldn't rule out Ross Brawn... after all isn't this the man who was going to spend his retirement fishing and watching Manchester United until Liberty Media tempted him?

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Published: 29/11/2022
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