Maranello, 23 April – Franco Gozzi, who was part of the history of the Prancing Horse, passed away today in Modena, aged 81.
“We have lost a key figure in the history of Ferrari,” said President Luca di Montezemolo. “My most abiding memory is of all the hours we spent together, talking about drivers and cars and I am grateful for the fact he was close to me when I was a young sporting director at the Scuderia.”
It is hard to sum up in a single word what Franco was to the company: sporting director, press officer, head of communications and above all, one of the closest advisers and confidants to Enzo Ferrari. He was not just a witness to events and quite how much of an active part he played in the life of the Maranello marque can be understood from looking at photo albums from the past in which, over a period of around thirty years, he appears alongside the Founder: he was his spokesman and sometimes the purveyor of his silences.
Those who knew him well and shared outstanding moments with him as well as daily life in the company, recall his humanity, and his sense of irony, while those who met him during the final chapter of his life at Maranello recall his great ability to put across through apparently innocuous anecdotes, the values that have made Ferrari a legend around the world.