It was a complicated Friday at the Italian Grand Prix for all the teams, as it was a case of keeping an eye on the weather to get as much dry running as possible to prepare for Saturday’s Qualifying, when it is expected to be dry.
But, the forecast for the race Sunday is less clear and could change.
Scuderia Ferrari (NYSE:RACE) dodged the rain that fell Friday, on its way to setting the 1st and 3rd fastest times of the day with Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel respectively. The times look very close between the teams and Qualifying could surprise.
FP1. The 1st session began in the wet, with Charles and Seb running full wet tires for their installation laps, before switching to intermediates. There were 3 Red flags when cars went off track which limited the amount of damp track running. Towards the end, it was dry enough for slicks and Charles and Seb took to the track to set their best times. Charles did 20 laps, the best being a 1’27”905 and Seb posted a 1’30”507.
FP2. In the 2nd 90 min session, everyone was on slicks, allowing all drivers to use dry weather tires and so Charles and Seb were able to evaluate all the compounds available, fine tuning the settings and getting to grips with the heavy braking requirements of the Monza track. They worked on preparing for the Race and Qualifying, which is when they did their best laps. Charles posted a 1’20”978. He was the only driver to get under the 1m 21s barrier, while Seb was 3rd quickest with a 1’21”179. The later part of the session was given over to long runs and by the end, Mr. Leclerc had completed 37 laps and Mr. Vettel 39.
Saturday we will see FP3 get underway at Noon CET, followed by qualifying at 3:00p. The Italian Grand Prix starts at 3:10 CET Sunday.
Charles Leclerc #16: “It was a special feeling to drive for Ferrari in Monza for the first time. I could actually see the tifosi cheering for us from the grandstands while I was driving, and it is just amazing to be here.
The day went quite well. While it is nice to be quickest, I do not think that we have a real picture of the whole situation yet due to the tricky conditions we faced on track today. In FP1, we were very competitive, especially on the intermediates, which is a positive. However, the lap times on the dry tyres in FP2 are not really representative and we have to keep working and understand where we can gain some more time. Our competitors are quick and we are still to see their full potential.
The car felt good. In terms of race pace, we are not yet at the point we were in Spa. On the qualifying pace, we also have some work to do and we will give our all to do a good job tomorrow.”
Sebastian Vettel #5: “The day was ok, but we can still get more out of the car. FP1 was a bit of a scrappy session, with all the teams heading out as soon as the light went Green after each Red flag. We did not have the usual rhythm of a Friday, but the main thing is that we got some decent laps in and we know where our weaknesses are and what to focus on.
For qualifying, we have to see what the conditions will be like, how careful we might need to be on the out lap, and how the tires will work. Then we will take it from there. It is nice if you get a tow around here, and the priority is to get one perfect lap.”
Ahead of the race, you just want to improve the car and make it faster overall, because you need a car that allows you to have a good performance while also saving the tires. We have some work to do, and I know that I can find more for tomorrow.”
Enzo Ferrari’s 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 Neutral to Bearish, overhead resistance is at 164.62 and support at 160.19 all Key indicators are flashing Neutral to Bullish in here. Ferrari finished at 163.23, +1.35 Friday in NY.
Note: Goldman Sachs upgraded Ferrari to ‘buy‘ from ‘neutral ‘calling the stock’s pullback a good “entry point.” “We upgrade Ferrari from Neutral to Buy, offering 15% upside to our new price targets of 182. Our thesis, outlined in Life of Luxury published last month, is fundamentally unchanged post Ferrari’s in-line 2-Q results. We view the stock’s recent pullback (-7.5% since July 16) as a good entry point in here.
Ferrari will continue to create value in the long term. Ferrari is a quality 1st long term investment, and I see it at 200/share in that frame.
Enjoy the racing this weekend at Monza. Click here for the official F1 schedules.