Laurent Mekies, a longtime Ferrari senior official is apparently being pursued by Alpine as he desires to leave Maranello.
Mekies is now rumored to be leaving Ferrari, adding to what appears to be something of an exodus from the company after director of vehicle design David Sanchez apparently left last week.
The Italian team’s assistant team principal and race director has been working there since 2018, but according to Formu1a.uno, he is not pleased with the way Benedetto Vigna who is the Ferrari’s CEO is running the team.
Mekies is said to be frustrated due to the fact that Vigna is working as a sporting manager and has become quite burdensome compared to the prior management. Vigna now oversees Mekies and other senior personnel at Ferrari due to a shift in organizational structure brought about by Mattia Binotto’s resignation.
Although Mekies would want to report to new team principal Fred Vasseur, this is not ideal for him, and even the former Sauber employee’s appointment has created chaos in Maranello. According to the Italian source, CEO Vigna was pleased with Vasseur’s hiring, while chairman John Elkann was not as pleased, reportedly preferring a more prominent character.
In contrast, there are plenty of prospects should Mekies decide to depart. According to Formu1a.uno, proposals have been made to the French engineer by Alpine, Liberty Media, and his previous employers, the FIA. But before taking up a new position, Mekies would probably need to take a gardening leave of some kind.
Mekies’ impending departure has been reported by other sources besides Formu1a.uno. Corriere della Sera noted that the situation between Ferrari and Mekies is at a stalemate after Vasseur reportedly opposed a contract for Mekies to work with Formula 1 alongside its president and ex-Ferrari team boss Stefano Domenicali.
Mekies started his career in Formula 3 before joining Arrows and transitioning to Formula 1. He was at Minardi when Red Bull acquired the team, and he continued to work there as chief engineer for Toro Rosso. He left in 2014 to join the FIA before switching to Ferrari in 2018.