The 2023 Formula 1 season was supposed to be, at least in terms of intentions and expectations, the year in which Scuderia Ferrari would build on the positive aspects of 2022 and would therefore go on the attack of Red Bull to compete (at least until the last race) for winning the drivers’ and constructors’ world championship.
Unfortunately, the clash with the on-track reality, after a winter of work and encouraging data from the simulator, was very abrupt for the Maranello team, considering the poor performance of the SF-23 and the bad outcome of the first two outings of the year.
A difficult start to the 2023 Formula One championship, in which Ferrari had a poor performance both in Bahrain and in Jeddah: two races in which the SF-23 underperformed, showing lack of downforce, tire management problems and, above all, lack of data correlation between the simulations and the real data from the track. Not only that, given the fact that the first part of 2023 has also been made difficult for Ferrari by a period of adjustment as a result of some changes, which were decided by new team principal Frederic Vasseur in terms of structure of the Ferrari Racing Division.
The departures of figures such as Jonhathan Giacobazzi and Gino Rosato, the reassignment of Inaki Rueda to new tasks in the strategy department, the promotion of Ravin Jain to the role of head of strategy and, finally, the resignation of David Sanchez from the role of Head of Vehicle Concept (a decision which was taken for some time, they say, but one that arrived in the days immediately following the first race of the season).
An evolving structure which is finding its definitive balance these days thanks to the redefinition of some crucial positions and following the appointment of some figures who, according to what was recently reported by the Italian version of the Motorsport website, would have been identified to fill strategic boxes in the technical department.
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The first, a fundamental figure whose role would have been redefined (as well as invested with greater responsibilities) is that of Enrico Cardile who, it seems, has been promoted from ‘Head of Chassis Area’ to technical director. A promotion of no small importance, given that Enrico Cardile would see his area of influence expand from managing only the chassis part to total coordination of the vehicle project.
In the article written by Franco Nugnes relating to the updates on the SF-23 for Imola, the Italian technician is in fact labeled as technical director, despite the fact that there are no official communications or confirmations on this matter from Maranello: “The interventions that the technical director, Enrico Cardile, has made are…”.
But the changes don’t end there, as going forward in reading the article, Franco Nugnes also talks about the figure designated to replace the outgoing David Sanchez, as Head of Vehicle Concept of the Scuderia. In fact, the new head of the car concept would not be Diego Tondi (a name that had been circulating in recent days but which, instead, seems to have been confirmed as head of aerodynamics), but that of an Italian technician, who has been with the company for some time and is trusted for his skills shown over the years.
“Fred Vasseur did not initiate the purges requested from outside, but he did initiate a recovery plan: he appointed the figure who took over from David Sanchez as Head of Vehicle Concept. This is an internal promotion and it is said that he is an Italian engineer who has been trusted. Together with Enrico Cardile and the head of aerodynamics, Diego Tondi, it will be up to this trio to find the keys to improving Ferrari’s SF-23 car” – the Italian journalist added.