Sauber has announced that James Key will become the team’s new technical director from 1 September. Key will replace Jan Monchaux, and he has been identified as the perfect candidate to lead the Sauber team into its Audi era by Sauber Motorsport CEO Andreas Seidl, his former boss at McLaren between 2019 and 2022. Key has prior experience with Sauber, serving as the technical director in the post-BMW period from 2010 to 2012 before he moved to Toro Rosso. During his time with Sauber, Key was responsible for the C31, the car that helped Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi achieve four podium finishes in 2012.
Seidl expressed his delight in welcoming James back “home” to Hinwil as he joins the team to shape its future, saying that he is confident that, together with the highly committed team, they will continue on the path of growth they have embarked on. Furthermore, Key’s appointment is a crucial step in the journey, as he will lead the transformation process of the technical side of the team. Sauber had its most successful season in a decade in 2021, climbing to sixth place in the Constructors’ Championship. Seidl also thanked Jan for his valuable contribution to taking Sauber to where it is now following the team’s successful season.
Key has admitted that there is much work ahead as Sauber prepares for Audi’s entry in 2026, and he is looking forward to leading the technical side of the team at a critical moment in its history. Key believes that every single member of their team in Hinwil has the commitment, determination, and hunger to help Sauber reach the top. He believes that it will require time, effort, and perseverance, and the rewards of this work will only arrive over the next two seasons and beyond. Key also expressed his gratitude to Seidl for giving him this opportunity and looks forward to repaying his trust and working closely with him on the team’s challenges and ambitions.