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Vasseur did not need to reassure Sainz: 'We trust each other'

Vasseur did not need to reassure Sainz: 'We trust each other'

16 February - 10:52 Last update: 12:25


Fred Vasseur asked former Ferrari team boss Jean Todt for advice during the winter break. Speaking to Sky Sports Vasseur explained how he has prepared for his new task and how he envisions his relationship with Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc.

Vasseur is certainly not embarking on an easy task as Ferrari's new team boss this year. His predecessor Mattia Binotto stepped down as team boss at the end of 2022 after a promising but ultimately disappointing season, and before even a metre had been driven, Ferrari CEO Benedotto Vigna already made it clear that there was only one acceptable outcome: winning the title. The pressure from the organisation is somewhat understandable, as the last time Ferrari won the drivers' title was in 2007, when Jean Todt was in charge of the entire organisation.

Not surprisingly, Vasseur sought Todt's advice. Under Todt's leadership, Ferrari won the championship eight times as the constructors and six times with the drivers. "For sure we had contact during the winter time, and we’ll have time to discuss together," Vasseur explained.

"But it’s also perhaps difficult to compare the two periods since it was so many years ago. But the experience of Jean is mega and I think it’s a huge opportunity for me to discuss with him and get his feedback."

'Carlos and I trust each other'

Vasseur immediately made it clear that he will not work with a first and second driver, despite many teams doing so. Early on, that choice was questioned, partly because Leclerc was significantly faster than Sainz last year and brought in more points, partly because Vasseur and Leclerc have known each other for a long time: Vasseur was Leclerc's team boss at Sauber in 2018. The Frenchman was asked if he needed to do any extra convincing to Sainz that there would be no preferential treatment for Leclerc.

"I didn’t need to because I think Carlos trusts me and I trust Carlos," Vasseur explained. "We have also had a long collaboration in the past, I tried to get him to Renault a couple of years ago and then at Sauber, but since he didn’t want to come to me I came to him. The mood in the team is perfect, we have a mutual trust, and that is the most important when you want to speak about the team and the relationship between the drivers."