Ferrari raid Mercedes again after snatching Hamilton to add to Wolff’s problems | F1 | Sport

It won’t just be Lewis Hamilton heading from Mercedes to Ferrari next season after the Italian team confirmed the signings of two more key figures from their rivals. In an announcement that stunned F1 fans, seven-time world champion Hamilton confirmed in February he would be moving at the end of the current campaign, ending a 12-year association with the Silver Arrows.

And now the Scuderia have appointed Jerome d’Ambrosio as deputy team principal. He will be second in command to Fred Vasseur as well as overseeing the driver academy, and engineer Loic Serra will also come on board as head of chassis performance engineering.

Former F1 driver d’Ambrosio, 38, only came on board at Mercedes in 2023 to oversee the team’s driver development programme. He also stepped in for Toto Wolff at the Japanese Grand Prix when the Austrian was recovering from knee surgery.

Serra meanwhile, was promoted to performance director at Mercedes in 2019, but news leaked out last year that he had agreed to join Ferrari for 2025. And on Monday, the Italian giants confirmed that both men would make the switch within five months. 

A released statement read: “Scuderia Ferrari HP is pleased to announce it is further strengthening the team with the arrival of Loic Serra and Jerome d’Ambrosio, both coming from the Mercedes AMG F1 team. Loic Serra and Jerome d’Ambrosio will both start working with Scuderia Ferrari HP on 1st October.” 

The duo are the latest additions to Vasseur’s ongoing rebuild at Ferrari, as he bids to land the team’s first F1 title since Kimi Raikkonen prevailed back in 2007. And the additions are likely to boost Hamilton, who hopes the switch will revive his own ambitions to win an unprecedented eighth F1 crown.

But the development causes a further headache for Wolff, who is yet to confirm which driver will replace Hamilton. A straight swap between the British driver and Carlos Sainz Jnr is one potential option, but Mercedes would have to beat off stiff competition from elsewhere to sign the sought-after Spaniard.

Ferrari’s recruitment process is unlikely to finish here. The Italian giants have also been linked with expert car designer Adrian Newey, who will leave Red Bull at the start of 2025.

In a hammer blow to the current pace-setters, Newey will depart having reportedly fallen out with Christian Horner following allegations the team principal behaved inappropriately towards a female member of staff. Having been with the team since 2006, the 65-year-old is widely perceived to have been pivotal to the team’s success of the last two decades, which has yielded seven drivers’ titles.

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