Frederic Vasseur was officially appointed as Ferrari team principal on 9 January 2023, the date that for the French manager rewarded a long journey in motorsport that started way back in 1992, when he was still an aeronautical engineering student at ESTACA and was preparing engines for Renault in Formula 3.
His first job in Formula 1 instead dates back to 2016, when he was called as team principal by Renault after his experience in the lower categories, with the transfer to Alfa Romeo Sauber dated 2017, as managing director and team principal. In short, a long-time engineer and manager has landed in Maranello, who knows all the facets of the complex world of motorsport in depth.
During an interesting interview for the Racecar Engineering website, Frederic Vasseur shared some general reflections on the evolution of modern Formula 1 and on team management: “Today the specific weight of teamwork is much more important than that of individuals, much more than it was just a few years ago. It is more a question of the results of the whole team, because large teams require more coordination across different departments. The influence of the individual is less significant, but that doesn’t mean it’s less decisive, because we’re talking about people who are more specialized than ever”.
The importance of the leader is therefore decisive: “The teams are observing a new generation of engineers who are entering Formula 1, with a completely new point of view. Therefore it is essential to have a management with a lot of experience to be able to coordinate everything in the most effective way, trying not to make the different points of view conflict with each other”.
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Finally, Fred Vasseur praised the new regulation era that began in 2022, starting with a joke: “The regulations are good for a team if that team is ahead. Seriously, all the changes have gone in the direction of performance convergence. The development freeze of the engines worked, going in the direction of a closer fight for the world championship. In 2017 and 2018 teams were separated by 5% in qualifying performance, now most are within 2% and in 2022 five teams had a 1% performance margin. I think if we keep these regulations for a while, Formula 1 will be a fantastic sport.” – the new Ferrari boss concluded.