David Sanchez, a former Ferrari head of vehicle concept, will join a competing Formula 1 team, perhaps McLaren, after taking some time off.
Sanchez spent a decade in high technical positions at Ferrari before recently resigning after “considering the decision for quite some time,” according to him.
In his role as director of vehicle concept for the 2022 and 2023 cars, he played a significant role. Before to that, he held a number of aerodynamic posts, culminating in his time as Ferrari’s head of aero from 2019 to 2021.
The resignation of Sanchez and his protracted gardening leave were made public last week by Italian media. Sanchez later officially confirmed the decision to leave to work on “another F1 project”. Last week, the Italian media made a speculative claim that this was McLaren, where Sanchez had previously worked before joining Ferrari.
During a five-year stint at McLaren, which is currently led by Andrea Stella, a former Ferrari colleague, he was a senior aerodynamicist and finally the aero team leader.
McLaren has had a bad start to 2023 same as last year, when the new aerodynamic rules were adopted, they also got off to a bad start. Sanchez would presumably join a reorganized department in a new job because the British squad said it has faith in technical director James Key and has not indicated it will replace him.
With his departure, Sanchez is the most recent senior Ferrari official to leave or have his position changed. After the conclusion of the previous season, former team principal Mattia Binotto departed, and throughout the winter, important, but less visible, employees including Jonathan Giacobazzi and Gino Rosato also left.
The pitwall and trackside teams were changed as a result of Inaki Rueda’s departure to a factory position ahead of the new season.
Meanwhile, the futures of Laurent Mekies and Enrico Cardile, the heads of the chassis department this year under the new team manager Fred Vasseur, were openly questioned by Italian media last week. Mekies has more particular trackside duties this season.