When the 2019 Formula one season began, Scuderia Ferrari was then known as Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow. However, there was a lot of debate over the name, owing to the sponsor, Mission Winnow. So, for a fairly long time, the name was dropped, but is now set to return for the first time in almost half a year at the Suzuka Circuit this weekend.
On the FIA list of teams, Ferrari have been officially called Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow. However, Mission Winnow has been largely absent since the Monaco Grand Prix back in May this year.
The controversy behind the brand is to do with its tobacco-related influence. Tobacco-based sponsors have not been present in Formula One for a very long time. So, iconic names like Marlboro and Camel, have been absent from the sport.
Coming back to Ferrari, the Italian team go into the weekend as favourites in Japan, owing to their upsurge in form. Ever since the Belgian Grand Prix, the Maranello squad have been the quickest in Formula 1. They were set to win in Russia before a mix-up in team orders and an unfortunate incident involving Sebastian Vettel paved the way for a shock Mercedes one-two.
During the Ferrari team orders saga, version 2019, Leclerc argued that he was hard done by Vettel. Although he eventually got the place back in the pitstop phase, the damage had been dealt. On record, Ferrari denied any talk of them employing the strategy to make the swap happen.
Then, karmic vengeance struck when Vettel retired on track after his pit stop. As a result of the subsequent Virtual Safety Car, it ended Ferrari’s hopes of a one-two and robbed a win from Leclerc.
Binotto chose his words carefully after the race, even saying that he could understand why Vettel did what he did. You would imagine this was a discussion point when they caught up this week. But can they afford for him to do that again and put another strong result at risk?