Ferrari chairman Luca Di Montezemolo has announced his departure from Ferrari despite having firmly denied rumours about that during last weekend's Italian Grand Prix.
A statement from the Italian confirms the news. “This is the end of an era and so I have decided to leave my position as Chairman after almost 23 marvellous and unforgettable years in addition to those spent at Enzo Ferrari’s side in the 1970s,” he said.
“My thanks, first and foremost, to the exceptional Ferrari women and men from the factory, the offices, the race tracks and the markets across the world. They were the real architects of the company’s spectacular growth, its many unforgettable victories and its transformation into one of the world’s strongest brands.
“A warm farewell and my thanks also to all of our technical and commercial partners, our dealers across the globe and, most particularly, the clients and collectors whose passion I so wholeheartedly share.
“But my thoughts go also to our fans who have always supported us with great enthusiasm especially through the Scuderia’s most difficult moments. Ferrari is the most wonderful company in the world. It has been a great privilege and honour to have been its leader.
“I devoted all of my enthusiasm and commitment to it over the years. Together with my family, it was, and continues to be, the most important thing in my life.
Another statement by Fiat/Chrysler, the automotive group that owns Ferrari, confirmed that di Montezemolo will be replaced by Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne, effective on October 13.
“Luca and I were appointed to the Fiat Board of Directors on the very same day back in 2003,” said Marchionne. “One year later, he became chairman and I became CEO. We worked side by side, sharing concerns, difficulties and successes.
“As chairman of Ferrari, he drove the company to a new level of technological and organizational excellence which also brought with it outstanding financial results.
“Luca and I have discussed the future of Ferrari at length. And our mutual desire to see Ferrari achieve its true potential on the track has led to misunderstandings which became clearly visible over the last weekend. I want to thank Luca for all he has done for Fiat, for Ferrari and for me personally.”