Fred Vasseur to establish clear hierarchy at Ferrari, with Charles Leclerc as number one driver

Given the persistent rumours regarding the role of Ferrari team principal, most of the Italian and international media outlets have confirmed that Mattia Binotto will be replaced, with an official confirmation expected within a few days.

The matter has hit the headlines of all the Italian newspapers in recent days, as most of the publications have been reporting on how Scuderia Ferrari may look under the leadership of a new team principal. According to several reports, it may be good news for Charles Leclerc, while Carlos Sainz may find himself in a more difficult situation in case Alfa Romeo team principal Fred Vasseur will indeed move to the Maranello team.

La Gazzetta dello Sport believes that with Fred Vasseur in charge of Scuderia Ferrari, Charles Leclerc will clearly become the team’s undisputed number one driver, something the Monegasque is said to have always longed for. As reported by the Italian daily newspaper dedicated to coverage of various sports, Charles Leclerc will get this opportunity hanks to Fred Vasseur, the prime candidate to replace Mattia Binotto:

A few years ago, Fred Vasseur confirmed his belief in the fact that a strong Formula 1 team has to be built around the team leader, and knows Charles Leclerc well after the two worked worked together at Alfa Romeo four years ago, when the Monegasque made his Formula 1 debut.

“For the last 25 years all good projects have been built around a reference driver. Ferrari with Schumacher, Renault with Alonso, Red Bull with Vettel, Mercedes with Hamilton.” – Fred Vasseur said at that time.

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Gazzetta dello Sport wonders if Charles Leclerc may have played a role in the decision to replace Mattia Binotto as Ferrari team principal: “It is hard to imagine him capable of that, let alone having that power, but inside the ‘gentleman’ that Leclerc is lurks sky-high ambitions. “It’s a risky hypothesis,” the publication pointed out, also reporting that the Monegasque would be thrilled with a number one status at Ferrari under the guidance of Frederic Vasseur as boss, also taking into consideration the fact that the French manager has worked with most of the Formula One champions in the last decade.

In addition to this, Charles Leclerc and Fred Vasseur are also linked by Nicolas Todt (the manager of the Monegasque driver), who was Fred Vasseur’s business partner in the past: “Between them there have been discussions at times, but that bond is strong. Just recently, Vasseur indicated that his career would have looked very different without Todt.”

La Gazzetta dello Sport has also questioned how Carlos Sainz will react to this situation: “It will be interesting to see how Carlos Sainz will react to this. After all, he arrived in Maranello under the assumption that he could compete with Leclerc, something he has been able to do so far and has shown he is capable of doing so.” – they added.

Corriere dello Sport has also reported on this story and they are certain that Fred Vasseur will be the next team boss of the Ferrari Formula 1 Racing Division, with the newspaper also pointing out the recent comments made by Ferrari chief executive officer Benedetto Vigna, who may be seen as a clear hint to Mattia Binotto’s immediate exit: “He made it clear that in his eyes second place is for the first loser.”

The newspaper adds that Fred Vasseur will be officially confirmed as Ferrari team principal at the beginning of 2023, after he is released by Alfa Romeo from his current contract. In the meanwhile, Benedetto Vigna will be the interim team principal: “One can imagine that Leclerc will be pleased with this choice, after previous dissatisfaction with certain choices made by Binotto, where the team interest was clearly put first,” the publication adds.

They have also speculated about Carlos Sainz’s reactions to the ongoing events and his status within the team: “If the new team boss is clearly going to choose one driver, we can already imagine that Sainz is going to bet on a future at Audi, the same brand his father [in rallying] competes for,” the outlet concluded.

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