Photo by Aston Martin Cognizant
Aston Martin have just announced that Otmar Szafnauer, Team Principle and CEO, has left the team. The statement reads...
"Otmar Szafnauer has left the Company and his role at Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One™ Team will be managed within the leadership team until a replacement is appointed.
We would like to thank him for the service provided to the team over the past 12 years and wish him well for the future as he will undoubtedly take on new challenges.
Fortunately, we are led and managed by a strong group of individuals, and we are comfortable to take a little time to explore options before announcing a new team structure. The focus of the team is currently on preparing the most competitive car possible for the start of the 2022 season."
Otmar has been with the company since before their re-branding last year when the raced as Racing Point and the original team name of Force India. There were rumours awash last year that he was linked with Alpine F1 Team but nothing has been confirmed. With such a short statement released about the departure of a CEO, it leads ones brain to think as to the reason Why?
During the 2020 season, Honda announced that they would be departing the Formula 1 scene once again as they have plans to focus to focus on their goal of achieving carbon neutrality throughout the automotive company.
The Power Unit Manufacturer returned back to the sport in 2015 following a 6 year absence. Jenson Button, who has strong ties with the Manufacturer, has raced with their Power Units for over 140 Grand Prix's and, was a Brand Ambassador for them while with McLaren Honda. JB believes that it is time for them to leave, albeit a shame at the same time.
"I kind of have an idea of how much they are spending, and it’s a lot of money, so I kind of get why they want to leave. It’s time.
“But they’ve had a fantastic year in the sport and it’s lovely for them, because it’s not been the easiest ride for them on this journey.”
“I was with them at the start of this [V6 hybrid] project and it wasn’t easy for them,” Button added to Motorsport.com.
“In the hybrid era, they struggled when they first came in. They were obviously a couple of years behind everyone else. [There were] lots of reliability issues.
“And I think it’s a shame that McLaren didn’t hang on with them. It was very easy for them to point the finger when they weren’t competitive and they pointed to the most unreliable part, which was the engine.
“But now moving forward, working with a team like Red Bull and all their experience, it seems that they’ve found a really good partnership.
“It’s nice to see Honda winning again, because their last win before the era with Red Bull was mine in 2006, a long time ago in sport. So it’s great to see them winning.”
Honda will continue to support Red Bull and AlphaTauri until 2023 when, Red Bull will take over completely with their very own Powertrains Division for all manufacturing and servicing.