Ferrari know what’s wrong but can they fix it?


in our mid-season review podcast, we discussed the issues Ferrari were having and how Sebastian Vettel looked as if he was trying to throttle the neck of his 2016 chassis and doing so in ragged fashion. We spoke of Ferrari’s pressure to beat Mercedes or at least achieve a competitive level with them and the demands for a race win this season placed on the team by CEO Sergio Marchionne. Ultimately, we felt that Ferrari needed to continue development of the 2016 chassis along with their 2017 program regardless of the departure of James Allison et. al.

To those ends, Vettel feels the team have identified the issues they are having in the medium and high-speed corners and they’ve come to that conclusion, slowly, painfully, through attrition over the first half of the season.

“We know that the last couple of races have been harsh and tough for us but they’ve been useful and we have understood a lot about our car strengths and weaknesses so we know what to focus on,” he said.

“It wasn’t entirely clear after the first couple of races but it became more and more evident.

“It’s a harsh way to find out and we’re not as competitive as we want but we know to what to do.

“It’s not something to change overnight but there is a plan and the second half should be stronger in that regard.

“It also depends on what other people will do but for now that is the focus on ourselves.”

Perhaps this plan they have going forward will remedy their deficit and at this point, as Paul and I mentioned in the podcast, they need to work very hard to finish second in the championship. Catching Mercedes just doesn’t seem likely given that the German team is the most dominant it has ever been in the last three seasons.


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charlie white

To borrow a boxing term, the team “threw in the towel” on 2016 when they announced they were concentrating on the 2017 runner. They publicly ceded the season and championship title to Mercedes-Benz/AMG. But almost every team in the paddock has done the same, publicly or privately. Maybe 2017 will be different but I’m not confident it will be different.

peter riva

I think the issue comes down, once again, to the lack of innovation borne of a lack of testing. 1. If the human brain is still 100x more capable than a supercomputer (Intel report, 2015), then having a human work out the solutions in real time is, ipso facto, proof that human testing is the key to development. 2. If human ingenuity is the key to product design (and note that NO company uses computers to initiate product development – not even Watson at IBM), then unleashing that human ingenuity is key to development of new capabilities of design. 3.… Read more »