Binotto successor must handle driver pairing

Mon, 12 December 2022, 07:00

Dec.12 (GMM) Ferrari’s new team boss will need to prioritise the relationship between Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz in 2023, according to F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.

Under the ousted Mattia Binotto’s leadership, although many in the Formula 1 world see Leclerc as the top Ferrari driver, Spaniard Sainz enjoyed equal number 1 status.

“Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen have been at the top of the world for a long time,” Domenicali, who was Ferrari boss until 2014, told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Charles and Carlos can certainly get there and they have what it takes to succeed. Their partnership in Maranello can last a long time and this would help them, and also the team, to grow.

“But in Formula 1, your teammate is your first opponent, so the future cooperation depends on how their relationship will be managed,” Domenicali added.

“That is an important theme that the new team boss will have to address immediately, because it is delicate.”

It is believed Binotto’s successor will be the current Sauber-Alfa Romeo boss Frederic Vasseur, who is rumoured to have already bought a house near Maranello.

When asked about Ferrari’s decision to oust his fellow Italian, Domenicali said: “Such choices can also yield benefits. Ferrari must now find a new balance with a new team boss.

“Continuity is of course more effective, so it may take some time to see real results,” he warned.

As for Binotto’s next move, it is reported that Ferrari is willing to pay the 53-year-old Italian a million euros if he turns down every offer from rival teams until summer next year.

“He has the qualities to continue his career at a high level,” Domenicali said.

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