Three races are done and dusted and already it looks like advantage Mercedes as usual. They have had three out of three race wins with Valtteri Bottas winning one and Lewis Hamilton winning the next two. For a while, it looked like Ferrari would be serious contenders as well, for the win. Sadly, it seems that it wasn’t to be for Ferrari in those races
However, somewhere along the way, the Maranello outfit lost their way and floundered about. In pre-season testing, it looked like Ferrari’s year with a strong overall package. As it turns out, Auto Motor und Sport discovered some interesting figures and possibly pinpointed the source of the team’s troubles.
While Ferrari looked out of their depth in Australia, they should have won in Bahrain. In China, they were vastly superior on the long straights. In fact, the time gained on the straights was around 0.7 seconds but corner speed hurt them the most.
However, come qualifying and a different W10 beast turned up at the circuit. As it turns out, Mercedes were simply running on a lower power mode throughout Friday. When Saturday qualifying arrived, the German outfit merely turned up the wick on their car and left Ferrari in the dust.
This actually begs the question, where did Ferrari go wrong and how are they so terrible all of a sudden? At the Chinese GP, Sebastian Vettel admitted, “We have a good car, but we’re not able to put it in the window yet to make it look good.”
“We’re not where we’ve been during the tests yet.”
“We didn’t have the speed of the Mercedes in China. But that’s nothing that shocks us. We just have to put our puzzle pieces together optimally.”
“We have to get the car into the window like Charles did in Bahrain. Mercedes seems to hit this window at the moment always and everywhere.”
“We now understand better what we need to make full use of our potential. It’s important to find the way we have to go in the next races.”
Meanwhile, Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has revealed to the media that a rear wing, similar to Mercedes’ is in the works. He knows that the Ferrari downforce is lower than that of Mercedes. AMuS also discovered that for the rear wing upgrade to work, the front wing would need fixing as well.