Former Ferrari boss, Jean Todt, has laughed off rumours linking him with a return to the Scuderia.
Current team principal, Mattia Binotto, has been under pressure lately following the collapse of the team’s title challenge, and multiple mistakes have left the Scuderia in almost insurmountable arrears to Red Bull.
Max Verstappen is set to wrap up the drivers’ title in the next two races, while Red Bull are over 100 points clear of their Italian rivals, so they have one hand on the teams’ championship too.
A mixture of reliability failures and inconceivable strategic mistakes have earned Ferrari a lot of criticism, but Binotto has persistently stood by his team, protecting them from public scrutiny.
In that vein, the 52-year-old has refused to consider making changes to the structure at Maranello; he retains full belief in his squad’s ability to win championships in the coming years.
Ferrari chairman, John Elkann, reinforced his trust in the Italian ahead of the team’s home race in Monza, although he did warn the boss that mistakes cannot keep happening as frequently as they have been.
Suggestions around Binotto’s future have been rife, and that naturally leads to speculation about who his replacement would be.
Todt waved away links between him and the Maranello-based team, and joked about previous whispers about him following in the footsteps of former Ferrari team principal, Maurizio Arrivabene, by joining Juventus.
“I would doubt that is real news, there is a lot of news underneath it that is not true,” he said, as per thejudge13.com.
“I had breakfast in Turin with Andrea Agnelli, many saw me and thought that I would also work with Juventus!
“It is obvious that when I was president of the FIA I was often with John Elkann, and we talked about Ferrari’s ambitions.
“But there is a difference between talking, sharing hope and working together, I think that chapters are designed to pass from one to the next.”
Ferrari are back in contention for race wins, which they had not been in either of the two seasons prior to this one.
Therefore, the 16-time champions are on the right path, and Binotto must stand firm against the criticism.
“Every era is different, I don’t want to give advice. It’s easy to give advice. The only thing I can say is to resist,” said Todt when asked what advice he might have for Binotto.
“And then now Ferrari is doing very well. It seems to me that people are not fully aware of that, Ferrari is back to win.
“I think everybody… well, almost everybody, we would like to see Ferrari winning championships, not just a few races.
“We can hope for that for next year, because this year I don’t think it’s possible anymore. But to win, you need excellence at all levels. That’s hard to achieve, and even harder to maintain.”
Todt went over the finer details of the recipe for success – something he helped cultivate alongside Rory Byrne, Ross Brawn and Michael Schumacher, among others, two decades ago.
“It starts with excellence in the detail, from whoever answers the phone in the company,” explained the Frenchman.
“If a company doesn’t answer the phone after ten rings, it’s not a good company. You can’t make two of the same mistakes, if it happens then there is something to change.”
Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz have won four races between them this year, despite having taken a combined 10 pole positions.