Ferrari’s (NYSE:RACE) Sebastian Vettel’s dry spell stretches is at 13 F1 races without a win, dating back to the Belgian Grand Prix last August.
The 4X world champion driver still holds #1 status at Ferrari. Thought at times this season he has been slower than Charles Leclerc, 21 anni, his highly-motivated team mate set on making an impression in his 1st season with The Scuderia.
When asked if Mr. Vettel’s performances had fallen below expectations team Chief Mattia Binotto defended him and said the problems were not down to him.
“First we need a good car … which is performing sufficiently well to win,” Mr. Binotto said. “It may be frustrating for him, no doubt. But 1st it is our duty to give him 1 that he can perform well in.”
The racer is not an issue that Ferrari anticipated. After strong performances in pre-season testing, it was seen as the team to beat, and even 5X champion Lewis Hamilton said it was so.
But Mr. Hamilton and MercedesAMG teammate Valtteri Bottas have won all 5 races this season while Ferrari has just 3 podium places. The team’s last win was by Kimi Raikkonen at the United States GP last October, 2 months after Mr. Vettel’s victory in Spa.
While MercedesAMG is all about smooth running, Ferrari’s car is hampered by a front suspension issue, a deficit in cornering speed and such basic trouble as getting enough heat into the tires quickly enough.
Ferrari’s passionate tifosi are not happy with the current standings. Mr. Vettel is 4th, nearly 50 points behind championship leader Hamilton, while Mr. Leclerc is 5th.
“After winter testing our confidence in the performance was higher than today,” Mr. Binotto said with an air of resignation. “There are a lot of points to recover.”
Mr. Binotto has been with Ferrari a long time and was promoted from CTO to team principal in January.
He took over the role from Maurizio Arrivabene after 2 years in which Ferrari blew the title race, due to a bizarre combination of panicky errors from Mr. Vettel and a string of baffling strategical and technical mistakes within the team management.
Although he is vastly experienced in terms of engineering and technical development, Mr. Binotto has not been in such a leadership role before.
“Certainly we are lacking some performance compared to our main competitors … there is much to do,” he said. “There are races where we can still be strong. We will fight day by day, race by race.”
This does not sound like the fighting talk observers expect from Ferrari, the most famous name in F1.
The Scuderia has won a combined 31 drivers’ and constructors’ championships.
Expectations of a win at Sunday’s Monaco GP are low in here, especially after a disappointing FP2 Thursday when both Ferrari drivers struggled with tire issues and were around 1 sec behind Mr. Hamilton’s best time.
Because the 3.3-kilometer track is a narrow twisting track it is difficult to overtake, getting Pole position Saturday is very often Key in deciding the race’s outcome.
Ferrari is the Aristocrat of the automotive sector.
The iconic Italian Supercar manufacturer claimed the title according to the latest Brand Finance Global 500 2019 report launched at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
HeffX-LTN overall technical outlook for RACE is Bullish to Very Bullish, there is light resistance now at 148.17, and strong support at 142.62, all of our Key indicators are Very Bullish in here