The Ferrari team have announced Stefano Domenicali will take on the role of Director of the Gestione Sportiva, a position held by Jean Todt. Domenicali was the team’s sporting director.
Ferrari also said technical director Mario Almondo will now be the team’s operations director, while Aldo Costa will take on the role of technical director. Gilles Simon will be Ferrari’s engine director.
The announcement comes after Honda confirmed Ferrari’s former technical director Ross Brawn will join the Japanese squad as their team principal.
Evenstar ~ I think this is a positive structure and there isn’t too much change. Stefano Domenicali has been part of the Scuderia Ferrari team since 1991. He has earnt his new position with the trust of the whole team and his predecessor Jean Todt. Domenicali also has a good relationship with Kimi and that’s what Kimi needs – a healthy environment to work in. If Ross Brawn came back to take position of team principle at Ferrari, he and Kimi would have to start from scratch to get an understanding of each other. So with the team not introducing new characters in different roles, this is generally good news for Kimi.
As revealed in April by autosport.com, Honda had contacted Brawn in a bid to convince the Briton to lead the Japanese squad from next year. Brawn is on sabbatical after 10 years as technical director of Ferrari.
Honda said Brawn will have full responsibility for designing, manufacturing, and engineering the team’s car. Brawn will work alongside Nick Fry, who continues as Chief Executive of the team.
"I am very excited to be joining the Honda Racing F1 Team," said Brawn. "Honda has a proud heritage in Formula One and the opportunity to help the team to realise its potential represents a fantastic new challenge for me in the sport.
"The team has already done a great job of giving due consideration to its future and has spent a good deal of time putting in place both people and first class engineering resources to achieve its ambitions. I look forward to working alongside what I know to be some very talented people and helping Honda to rediscover its winning ways."
Fry added: "One of my main tasks over the past six months has been to attract new talent to the Honda Racing F1 Team and we have made a number of key appointments in the areas of aerodynamics, design, engineering, marketing and on the racing team.
"Today’s announcement that Ross Brawn is to join our team is a very satisfying conclusion to the process of refreshing and revitalising a strong and determined team. Ross obviously needs no introduction.
"His experience of winning world championships in Formula One will be crucial as we seek to put Honda back into championship contention and I am delighted that we will be working together to achieve that."
Brawn will start work with Honda on 26 November.
Evenstar ~ I can’t help but think of Stepneygate with this move from Brawn. It still hasn’t been made clear whether Ferrari’s ex employee Nigel Stepney and McLaren’s ex chief designer Mike Coughlan were intending to head to Honda, after messing around with the Ferrari documents. It seems okay to suggest perhaps that this is exactly what they intended to do because Ross Brawn is joining Honda. Nick Fry’s comments are also quite intriguing. You have to wonder – it would have made a brilliant team with that threesome…interesting…
Nonetheless, a huge role for Ross Brawn and he did say he wanted a different challenge if he were to return to F1. He has the mind and the talent to bring Honda out of the void. And Jenson Button will be quite relieved I assume! Good luck to him.