If a manufacturer’s fortunes are affected by individuals, then Ferrari’s have taken a definite upturn with the announcement this month that Cesare Fiorio has taken over the role of Formula One supremo.
Fiorio has overseen Lancia’s rallying operation for almost twenty years during which time the marque won seven World Rally Championships. He was also in control when Lancia pitted its sports racing cars against Porsche in the early Eighties, though with little success. His influence spread to Alfa Romeo once it was taken over by Fiat, although the demise of the ProCar project was beyond his control.
While Fiorio replaces Piergiorgio Cappelli, the stopgap replacement on the death of Enzo Ferrari, his position as Competitions Director of Lancia and Alfa Romeo is taken over by Claudio Lombardi, Abarth’s technical chief since 1983, who was responsible for the design of the complex Group B Delta S4, followed by the HB Turbo and Integrale.
With Fiorio leaving his post during the season and being replaced by a surprise candidate, there in speculation that Lancia’s rallying programme will he reduced.