Monisha Kaltenborn became a shareholder and team principal of Sauber in 2012 as team founder Peter Sauber took a step back from his activities in running the team.
In 2016 she sold her share in the team to new owners Longbow Finance but stayed on in her role as team principal. However ahead of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix she has left her position. A statement by the team said:
“Longbow Finance SA regrets to announce that, by mutual consent and due to diverging views of the future of the company, Monisha Kaltenborn will leave her positions with the Sauber Group effective immediately. We thank her for many years of strong leadership, great passion for the Sauber F1 Team and wish her the very best for the future. Her successor will be announced shortly; in the meantime we wish the team the best of luck in Azerbaijan.”
The “diverging views” was reported to be a difference of opinion over how to manage the drivers. Kaltenborn apparently wanted to continue to provide equal support to both Marcus Ericsson and Pascal Wehrlein whilst the new owners want to focus on Ericsson – however the team deny this, saying that such reports are “patently untrue”.
No replacement has been names as of yet, but former HRT team principal Colin Kolles is one of the people rumoured to be taking over the position – although Giedo van der Garde (who famously lost out when Sauber contracted three drivers to race for the team in 2015) has also thrown his hat into the ring for the job…
Always have wanted to add 'Team Principal' on my resume… #youguysstillgotmynumber
— Giedo van der Garde (@GvanderGarde) June 21, 2017
Banter Garde is at it again.