Ferrari announce replacement for head of vehicle concepts

Ferrari's former head of vehicle concept David Sanchez has reportedly agreed to return to McLaren, following a period of gardening leave.

It has been reported by the Italian edition of that Ferrari have promoted head of aerodynamics Diego Tondi to replace former head of vehicle concepts David Sanchez, after the Frenchman quit.

The start of 2023 certainly hasn’t been plain sailing for Ferrari, with several senior figures having become disgruntled.

It’s been speculated that Sanchez won’t be the last senior figure to leave the Maranello-based team, with there believed to be several who are unhappy with Ferrari’s CEO Benedetto Vigna.

Vigna’s management-style has been questioned in recent weeks, with him having taken on some of the roles that were previously carried out by former team principal Mattia Binotto.

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Race director Laurent Mekies is believed to be one of the senior members of the team who are unhappy with Vigna, with new team principal Frederic Vasseur having been speculated as another.

Vasseur has denied this, but things are certainly looking grim for the Scuderia.

Star driver Charles Leclerc is another individual who is believed to be unhappy with Ferrari, after he suffered yet another power unit failure at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

The engine failure came as a complete shock to Ferrari, who thought they’d solved their reliability issues during the winter break.

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Leclerc ultimately retired from third, with the Monegasque having reportedly called for a meeting with Ferrari president John Elkann to be assured that 2023 won’t be a repeat of 2022.

The 25-year-old suffered several engine-based issues last season, with Leclerc having retired from two races whilst leading following a power unit failure.

He certainly wasn’t pleased with the engine failure after the season-opener, with the Ferrari driver hoping that the team can “understand what went wrong”.

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“We definitely had the car to fight for the podium. I mean, honestly, the podium was there,” a frustrated Leclerc said after the race.

“We had a good gap behind, I was managing the pace, everything felt good, so it is a shame. Now I just hope we can look into it, understand what went wrong and don’t have this problem anymore…”

Promoting somebody within the team to replace Sanchez will hopefully stabilise Ferrari slightly, with the side needing to bounce back quickly this weekend in Saudi Arabia.