Vasseur Clarifies 2024 Is Not Merely A Pre-Hamilton Transition Year

Fred Vasseur, Ferrari's team principal, emphasises 2024 is not just a lead-up to Lewis Hamilton's arrival but a critical year for the team.

Mark Phelan

By Mark Phelan
Updated on February 19, 2024

Fred Vasseur Ferrari 2024 Launch

The signing of the seven-time world champion to take over Carlos Sainz’s spot has led to speculation that Ferrari is only looking ahead.

Vasseur is adamant that the current season is of utmost importance and that the team is fully committed to making significant progress this year.

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“No, this is wrong, 2024 won’t be a transition year,” said the Frenchman. “It’s a quite important season for us and I’m fully focussed on this.

“I think the best way to prepare something is to do a good job. It means that we are focussed on ’24, we want to get the best, we want to win races, we want to continue on the path of 2023, and we won’t be at all thinking about 2025.”

Since assuming leadership at the beginning of last year, Vasseur has been instrumental in making crucial hires, some of which remain confidential. He asserts that the journey towards enhancing the team is an ongoing effort.

“I would say that by DNA, if you start to be happy with what you have, you are dead,” he said. “It means that you need to be always in the mindset of continuous improvement, to try to work on your weaknesses, and to try to step on some areas.

“And so it’s a no-end project. For sure people are starting to join the team now, and this is good news. It’s day after day, I think we are reinforcing the team, we are making steps.

“But again, it’s not that tomorrow morning I will say now we are there, I’m happy with the situation. If you start to have this kind of approach, I think it’s the beginning of the end.”

Vasseur firmly believes that the duo of Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc will propel the team ahead in 2024.

“If you have a look at last year, we had a very positive evolution all over the season,” he said. “But we had some stages of the season when Charles was performing a bit more, when Carlos was performing a bit more.

“Into the recovery of the team, between the first part and the last part, I think the drivers played a decent role. We need to have this kind of evolution in a racing team. And we are there today.

“For sure, we want to have more, we want to push more, it’s the DNA of our racing team. But honestly, I’m really convinced that we will have this kind of positive evolution again in ’24. And this will be very helpful to continue to improve.”

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About The Author

Senior Editor

Mark Phelan
Mark Phelan

Mark is a staff writer specialising in the history of Formula 1 races. Mark researches most of our historic content from teams to drivers and races. He has followed Formula 1 since 1988, and admits to having a soft spot for British drivers from James Hunt and Nigel Mansell to Lando Norris. He loves a great F1 podcast and has read pretty much every drivers biography.

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