The Maserati MSG Formula E team that will run out of the former Venturi stable in Monaco for the upcoming Gen3 era will be spearheaded by former DS Techeetah sporting manager James Rossiter.
Rossiter will cease his work as a driver with the Peugeot Hypercar team in the World Endurance Championship to take up his new role with the DS customer FE team with immediate effect.
The 38 year-old will therefore call time on his competitive international motorsport career after 20-years of competition that has included wins in Formula 3, LMP2 and Super GT, as well as positions as a test driver for the BAR and Force India Formula 1 teams.
Rossiter’s last professional race was at last month’s WEC 6 Hours of Fuji where he starred in the opening stints by running third in the new Peugeot 9X8 Hypercar.
He is expected to be replaced for the forthcoming final WEC round of 2022 by recent Peugeot signing Nico Mueller, who will race in both the WEC and in Formula E with the Abt team next season.
“Regarding his contribution to Peugeot Sport, James will remain our reserve, development, and simulator driver until Bahrain to guarantee the stability of the 2022 programme,” a Peugoet spokesperson told The Race. “We will base our Bahrain line-up on tests we have executed on track, in the simulator and during this season end.
“We will communicate in the next 10 days on our lineup at Bahrain.”
The appointment of Rossiter will be seen as a natural progression after he moved into a full-time sporting manager role at the DS Techeetah team in 2019.
That was when he succeeded Pedro de la Rosa, who spent two seasons with the team as it broke through to become a double Formula E champion with Jean-Eric Vergne.
The new-look Maserati MSG team, which has transitioned from 2021 teams’ runner-up Venturi, interviewed several candidates last month but Rossiter was always considered one of the favourites due to his previous relationship with Venturi and his links with Stellantis Motorsport.
Rossiter acknowledged to The Race earlier this week that “having the support of Stellantis to move forward to the [Maserati] opportunity was key”.
“I’m still part of the [Stellantis] family with the Maserati brand, which is important,” he added.
“There’s a lot of relationships that have been built over the last five years to help with that. So, from that side, it’s been positive.
“I’m very grateful that that I took that opportunity [with Techeetah] and I’ve learned a huge amount in the last three years doing that to prepare myself for this role.”
Maserati MSG’s rapid appointment of Rossiter comes just three weeks after the news Jerome d’Ambrosio was leaving the team principal hot seat after just one season in the role.
One of Rossiter’s first big calls will be on which driver to partner with Edoardo Mortara (above) for next season.
Mortara will race with the Monaco based squad for a sixth consecutive season but it is highly likely that the already signed Nyck de Vries will trigger a Formula 1 exit clause.
That is expected to come soon, so Rossiter, along with team owners Scott Swid and Jose Aznar, will be on the hunt for what The Race understands will be an experienced driver as a late replacement for De Vries.
Additionally, as a customer supplied team, Maserati MSG is expected to receive its Gen3 cars next month post-homologation, although it does get an allocation of four test days via its agreement with sister Stellantis brand DS which has been testing since July.
Rossiter has driven the latest car and will be able to relay some of the information already gathered.
Talking of Rossiter’s hire, Swid said that Rossiter will bring “the experience of significant successes in Formula E and we will be harnessing that expertise to achieve our bold ambitions under our new identity”.
“This is a pivotal time for our team and the sport as a whole, James is ambitious and strategic by nature, and these are qualities we have seen pay off in Formula E,” he added.
“His previous role with the development of the Gen3 car will also give us an advantage. We’re looking forward to seeing what he can accomplish leading the team into season nine and beyond.”