F1: Alfa Romeo Hires James Key as Technical Director, to Lead Sauber into Audi Era

James Key has been a big force in Formula 1 for many years. He has been active in the sport for a very long time and worked for several different teams and now will join Andreas Seidl at Alfa Romeo as Technical Director.

By Divyam Dubey | on June 9, 2023 Follow us on Autox Google News

With the departure of Jan Monchaux, Alfa Romeo has made yet another change to its Formula One structure by naming James Key as its new Technical Director. After serving as Technical Director for the then-Sauber team from 2010 to 2012, Key will formally join the Hinwil organisation on September 1, 2023. This is Key's first full-time position since leaving McLaren earlier this year, and his hiring has been called "a statement of intent" by the team as they prepare to become Audi's works team in 2026. Key has worked for a number of different teams, notably Jordan Grand Prix, where he became F1's youngest-ever Technical Director at the age of 33 in 2005, and the subsequent incarnations of Midland, Spyker, and Force India, in addition to his time spent with Sauber, Toro Rosso, and McLaren.

F1: James Key Formula 1 Career

James Key 1

Key has been a major player in Formula 1 for a long time. He's been involved with the sport for a long time and has a plenty of team experience to boot.  After finishing studies, Key started working for the Jordan Grand Prix F1 team in 1998 as a data engineer, and he eventually became Takuma Sato's race engineer.

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When MF1 Racing took over the team in 2005, Key was one of the newest individuals in the sport to ever assume the post of technical director. Over the course of many years, he served as technical director for the team as they evolved from the Spyker F1 squad into the Force India F1 team.

In 2012, he became the technical director for Scuderia Toro Rosso (now Scuderia AlphaTauri). After joining McLaren in 2018, he remained for a considerable amount of time. Key resumed his role as the British team's technical director.

After numerous years working with Andrea Stella and Andreas Seidl at McLaren, he was let go in March 2023 owing to a massive reorganisation of the team's technical department.

F1: James key’s Alfa Romeo Move

On June 7th, Alfa Romeo confirmed in a statement that they had hired James Key to serve as their technical director. The British engineer released a statement explaining his motivations for taking on the role of technical director for a former team.

“I am delighted to be returning to Hinwil to work with old, and new, colleagues at Sauber; I have very fond memories of my time there before. I am grateful to Andreas [Seidl] for the confidence he has placed in me and look forward to repaying his trust and working closely with him on the challenges and ambitions ahead," said Key.

Andreas Seidl

Andreas Seidl, Sauber Group CEO added: “I am delighted to welcome James back home to Hinwil as he joins us to shape the future of this team. The operation he will find has changed a lot since his time here, but the same drive, the same commitment that contributed to making the team successful in his previous experience are still the same. I am sure that, together with this very talented and committed team, we will be able to continue on the path of growth on which we have embarked.

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The fact that James Key worked with Andreas Seidl at McLaren and is familiar with other team members from his time as technical director at Sauber bodes well for his speedy acclimation.

Tags: F1 James Key Andreas Seidl McLaren Alfa Romeo James Key joins Alfa Romeo Audi F1 Team

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