TEAM PRINCIPAL, McLAREN F1
A detail-orientated leader, but with a focus on the big picture, Andrea Stella's promotion to Team Principal in December 2022 had been a long time in the works.
The Italian's roles, responsibilities and value to McLaren have grown since he first arrived in 2015 as Head of Race Operations, having followed Fernando Alonso from Ferrari, where he had been his Race Engineer. Andrea spent three years in that role before a promotion to Performance Director in 2018, and, Executive Director, Racing, in 2019, forming a key part of what was a three-pronged leadership team, alongside James Key and Piers Thynne.
With more than two decades of F1 experience behind him, Andrea is no stranger to the paddock. The Italian is an Aerospace Engineering graduate from the Sapienza University of Rome. He holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering and began his F1 career as a Performance Engineer with Ferrari, initially in the test team before promotion to the race team as part of Michael Schumacher's side of the garage in 2002.
Winning three F1 World Championships in five years, Stella contributed to a hugely successful period for the Italian outfit, working within a pressurised environment with a winning mentality. He continued in the same role when Kimi Räikkönen joined and won the Drivers' title in 2007, before becoming his Race Engineer in 2009. He then spent five years as Fernando Alonso's Race Engineer at Ferrari – with whom he formed a particularly strong bond – coming within a whisker of winning the title in 2010 and 2012.
Since Andrea joined McLaren in 2015, we've enjoyed our strongest Constructors' Championship since 2012, with third in 2020, as well as taking two fourth-place finishes, and fifth in 2022 – a significant improvement on the ninth-place finish in his first season. He was also a member of the team who oversaw Daniel Ricciardo's win in 2021 – our first since 2012 - which was Andrea's 92nd in F1 in total. As Team Principal, Andrea's job is to continue with that work and make the role his own.