Ferrari boosts quality control department with key signing

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The Ferrari Formula 1 team has drafted in Maria Mendoza, an expert in metals and chemicals, to help boost its quality control department.

Mendoza's arrival at the team has come at a crucial time as the squad ramps up efforts to improve reliability after its recent troubles.

She has worked at FIAT since 2012 and was recently head of Supplier Quality Powertrain EMEA for the Fiat Chrysler Group.

Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne has been urging Ferrari to lift its quality control, with technical director Mattia Binotto having been working on that area for a while and saying that changes were being made.

Speaking in Japan last weekend, Binotto said: "What we are considering is something, already planned, is to improve our quality department.

"Our quality department will be and somehow is already reinforced and those are the changes that our chairman was meaning."

Sebastian Vettel's title hopes are in the balance after a crash in Singapore and engine troubles in Malaysia and Japan have left him 59 points adrift with only 100 more available.

Marchionne revealed earlier this week that it was a €59 spark plug that forced Vettel's retirement from the Japanese Grand Prix.

In an interview with Italy's Class CNBC television channel, Marchionne said: "It was a technical nonsense that had an impact on a car that costs millions of euros.

"It's a problem we've probably ignored over time because it was never of much importance. But now we've had at least three occasions where we've really seen the devastating impact on performance. We'll fix it."

Ferrari is continuing investigations into the cause of the spark plug failure, which came one week after the broken manifold problems that hit the team in Malaysia.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Teams Ferrari
Article type Breaking news