Ferrari are “crystal clear” about car’s weaknesses · RaceFans


Ferrari’s head of chassis development does not share driver Carlos Sainz Jnr’s view that the team do not understand the limitations of their car.

The team have experienced swings in form from race to race in the battle behind Red Bull at the front of the field. Yesterday Sainz suggested that Ferrari’s inconsistent performance throughout 2023 so far was down to “something intrinsic that we don’t fully understand”.

However, Enrico Cardile, Ferrari’s head of chassis area, says the team completely understand why their performance is so inconsistent.

“For us, it is crystal clear what we did wrong with the car,” Cardile insisted. “What the weaknesses are is clear – it’s not a matter of our understanding what we should do.

“Now for the future it’s a matter of delivering a good product where we cope with the targets we have. We know what we have to do, it’s a matter of doing, it’s a matter of finding the right contents of the car, the right architecture of the car to achieve the target.

“The other point is this car is consistent during the rest of weekend in terms of behaviour, but sometimes this behaviour changes from track to track. In Hungary, we had a difficult time. In Belgium, the performance was back. So sometimes it happens, but then during the weekend the car behaviour is consistent and we can work on it.

“On this track, we dedicated FP1 to a specific test to better tune our tools to better operate the car this year and to have data to improve the behaviour of the car next year. But I disagree with Carlos.”

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Cardile, a trained aerospace engineer who joined Ferrari with their sports car division in 2005 before becoming a part of the F1 team in 2016, says that the team recognise that their aerodynamic limitations and have been working hard to address them.

“We think that our main weakness is on the aero characteristics of the car,” he explained. “So all the focus since [testing] when it’s been pretty clear that we were not at the level that we expected to be, the weakness for the front was coming from there. So all the focus, all the efforts has been since [testing] on improving the aero characteristics of the car.”

Rather than struggling to figure out the performance deficits that exist with their car, Cardile says the team have consistent data that reinforces their understanding of their car.

“We have been lucky, because the comments of the drivers has been always aligned between the sim and track and aligned with the data we gather from the car,” Cardile said. “So we can see what we are complaining with.

“We are a bit progressed through the development of this car, improving some characteristic of the car. But the pace we are developing the car is obviously not satisfactory because we are still far from the blue guys there.”

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