Who Exactly is a Team Principal in F1

who is a team principal in f1

Every business requires having a leader. This is important and it applies to sports too. In formula one, there are many roles that require leadership. The teams have different people who play various roles to make the team work efficiently. One such person is a team principal, and you might ask; who exactly is a team principal in F1?

That is what you will find from this article. I am going to find out who a team principal is to a formula one team. It would be good for you to come along.

When I started following up on the formula one, it was intriguing to find that there is a team leader in each team.

It can be complicated when you think of how a business is managed. You have a board of directors, chief executive officer and a management team.

That is how a formula one team works. You have a board, a team principal and a management team in charge of various divisions or aspects of a team.

So, who is a team principal in F1? You are in luck today, and by the end of reading this, you will understand who a team principal is in formula one, and the role they play.

Who Exactly is a Team Principal in F1?

A team principal in F1 is the leader for a formula one racing team who makes the day-to-day decisions of how the team works or runs.

When you think of a team principal in F1, you should think of the CEO of a company. He or she is the person who runs the team.

It is important to remember that running or managing a formula one teams requires a leader. That is the person people refer to as the team principal in formula one sporting.

Managing a formula one team means taking care of different aspects and elements in the team.

It is a mix of various things like technical aspects, marketing, human resources, finance and sporting. As the team principal, you will be required to make the right day-to-day decisions.

If you are a fan of formula one, it is possible you have seen or heard from the team principals during race weekends.

Roles of a Team Principal in F1

To understand who a team principal is in F1, it is important to also know the role the team principal plays in formula one.

Over the years, this role has evolved as the formula one teams have evolved too.

5 Key Roles of a Team Principal in Formula One

While there are several things that a team principal does today, here are the top five key roles of a team principal in F1;

  1. Overall Management of an F1 team.

One of the key roles of a team principal in F1 is to provide overall management of the formula one team.

An F1 team consists of various people, and several departments. These require an overall manager, who will ensure the team is working harmoniously to achieve success on the track.

Like every other business, a team principal is the person in charge of the overall management of a formula one team.

  1. Strategic Leadership.

Every organization requires proper guidance to succeed. A team principal offers strategic leadership to his team.

You might have seen this in the last couple of year, across various F1 teams.

Some have succeeded, while others have failed to inspire confidence in their teams.

  1. Securing Sponsorship

Sponsorship in formula one is huge. It is one of the ways formula one teams make money.

As such, a team principal, together with the commercial director will get involved in securing partnerships or sponsorship from brands.

  1. Hiring Drivers

While a formula one team has many people or staff members, an F1 driver is a critical part of the team.

In most teams, it is the role of the team principal to scout for and have talks with drivers. This could be towards hiring them to drive for the team, or when negotiating contract extensions.

  1. Media Relations

When at a race, or if you are watching it on TV, you will likely find the team principals doing pre-race or post-race interviews with the media.

As the team leaders, it is important to continue engaging fans and other stakeholders, who include team’s shareholders.

Current F1 Team Principals

In the formula one today, the following are the current team principals of the ten teams.

  1. Toto Wolff – Mercedes F1
  2. Christian Horner – Red Bull Racing
  3. Mattia Binotto – Ferrari
  4. Andreas Seidi – McLaren F1
  5. Laurent Rossi – Alpine
  6. Franz Tost – Alpha Tauri
  7. Frederic Vasseur – Alfa Romeo
  8. Simon Roberts – Williams Racing
  9. Guenther Steiner – Haas F1 Racing
  10. Otmar Szafnauer – Aston Martin F1

It is common to find them speaking about their team’s strategies and plans. They provide leadership to their teams.

How to Become an F1 Team Principal

Becoming an F1 team principal is not easy. It depends on a number of factors.

When you look at the current team principals in F1, you will realize that each has their own unique story of how they got into the position.

You can become a team principal in three ways;

  1. If you have worked with a team for long.
  2. When you are an investor and shareholder in the team
  3. If you are appointed or hired into that position.

The above ways are the most common on how you can become an F1 team principal.

However, you should understand the sport and know how formula one works. It would help if you are passionate about motor sports and building a business.

Who is the Richest Team Principal in F1

Team principals play a significant role in formula one. It is common to find that they also can grow wealthy from this job.

From the money they make from running the teams, one can easily grow their net worth over time. They do this through smart investments.

One of the richest team principal on the grid today is Toto Wolff. He is an investor in Mercedes F1 team, holding 33% stake in the business.


In conclusion, running a formula one team is not easy and requires team work. If you have been wondering who exactly a team principal in F1 is, I hope this resource has been helpful.

Just like a business, there are several functions within the formula one team. This requires different skill sets and expertise.

While you will have experts handling specific aspects of the formula 1 business, the overall leadership if the racing team requires a leader.

A team principal is that person who leads the F1 racing team on the track. He or she provides the overall leadership of the team and is in charge of the team each weekend.

Sometimes, the team principal is an owner or part-owner of the formula one team.