Tag Archives: Ferrari

Ferrari targets title challenge with new SF16-H

Ferrari F16-H

Ferrari unveiled its new car in an online launch today amid much optimism in the Maranello camp about the season ahead.

Dubbed the SF16-H, the car features more white in its livery than in recent years, harking back to the golden years of the mid-70s.

The car is very different from its predecessor, and notably after four years with pullrod front suspension, Ferrari has gone back to pushrod.

Team boss Maurizio Arrivabene made it clear that the team has to be in the fight for the World Championship this year.

“Normally I’m not setting the objective, it’s my boss who sets the objective,” said Arrivabene. “Last year the objective was three victories, we got it. I think this year we need to push a bit more, so it’s going to be the championship.

“At least we would like to fight until the end for the championship. I know it’s nit going to be easy because our competitors they are not sleeping at all. For sure we are all committed to do our best.”

Technical director James Allison said of the car: “I have to say looking at it today I feel very, very happy and extremely proud of all the people here at Maranello, and I can’t wait to take it racing.”Ferrari F16-H

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Sainz expects rivals to progress in 2016

Carlos Sainz Jr says he was relieved that Scuderia Toro Rosso was finally able to confirm its Ferrari deal – but the Spaniard is concerned that the team could be left behind as others develop their newer engines over the course of the season.

Sainz says that at one stage he was worried about the team’s future after doubts were expressed about Red Bull’s commitment to F1.

“They were very small thoughts,” he told this writer. “Honestly I always had a lot of trust, a lot of belief, that the thing was going to be solved really soon – even though it wasn’t very soon, but soon enough!

“I am relieved that now we have a solid platform to work on next year. I think it will be a step forward. Having a full Italian team will also help, I think there will be good relationships – from what I know they really enjoyed the time when Ferrari was there. I think everything is very positive for next year.”

The downside is that STR’s 2015-spec engines are likely to be unchanged over the course of the season, while all the other manufacturers will be making steps as they use their tokens. Sainz says that the team knows it has to make the most of the early races.

“This is the main thing, that probably the first half of the season will be the most important for us, when we need to maximise what we have. The second half will be a bit more difficult, obviously. Especially after looking at this year, there was a lot of in-season development.

“Also we noticed with Renault that we had the same power for the full season. Toro Rosso at the beginning of the season was up there, and then little by little we went backwards. So it will be all about maximising the first half, I think.”

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Ferrari not involved in Hoyle spy case, says Mercedes

Mercedes has formally confirmed that Ferrari is not involved in the ongoing spy investigation into departing engineer Ben Hoyle.

When Mercedes launched legal action against Hoyle the company understood that he would be heading to Maranello. However, as previously reported the Italian team denied that Hoyle would be joining.

In a website statement today Mercedes has sought to clarify the situation and stressed that Ferrari is not part of the story.

The statement said: “There are on-going internal investigations, regarding confidential information being removed from Mercedes by Mr Hoyle, in order to protect against potential damage to both Mercedes and any company which could potentially receive such information.

Mercedes will continue with these investigations until it can conclude that all the confidential information is recovered, which is anticipated to take a further 2-4 months.”

Regarding Ferrari’s involvement the statement added: “The investigation has shown no reason to believe that information has been transferred to Ferrari, nor have any of the court documents made any allegation regarding any inappropriate conduct by Ferrari.

Mercedes will continue to protect its interests, including carrying on the legal proceedings against Mr Hoyle, and continue to protect against potential inappropriate transfer of confidential information within the motorsport industry.”

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Toto Wolff: “Ferrari will be a very important competitor…”

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff acknowledges that Ferrari is catching Mercedes after Sebastian Vettel kept in touch with the pacesetters in Brazil.

The German finished just 14secs behind winner Nico Rosberg, and 6secs behind Lewis Hamilton. It was his 13th visit to the podium in 2015.

I am anticipating a robust challenge from Ferrari because they have done some clever moves,” said Wolff. “And they have definitely caught up. You can see that even towards the end of the race today Sebastian was not very far away, when Lewis and Nico were pushing flat out biggest gap was seven seconds. That is not a clear-cut dominant race win. I think we will have a situation where Ferrari will be a very important competitor.

After a relatively low-key race in Brazil Wolff was asked if the sport needed a further step from Ferrari to improve next year’s show he said: “I think we are not relying on it. We wouldn’t want to rely on it! What you can see again with aerodynamic efficient cars, it is very difficult to follow. You destroy your tyres and when you destroy your tyres by attacking and being close for a couple of laps you have no performance left in the tyres. It is nothing new.

We have seen this the last decades, always the same. And in the race the top guys were running away at the front, there wasn’t any rain and not a lot of incidents in the race. It is like a good and a bad football match, and today we have probably seen one of the boring football matches.”

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Sebastian Vettel: “I hope that next year is a big step…”

Sebastian Vettel says he’ll have a lot more input into next year’s Ferrari having joined the team too late last season to have much impact on the 2015 car.

Vettel is also optimistic about Ferrari’s future prospects, especially given the progress the team has made in the course of this season.

“A lot more,” he said when asked about his input for 2016. “You don’t join the team until you join the team. Obviously there were a lot of decisions that were already taken, some decisions were taken when I was there already.

“The season we’ve had so far has been phenomenal, if you think firstly about where the team was last year. Second the situation that we faced at the very beginning, a lot of new people, people were changing positions within the factory. It’s not that easy all those things to digest for a team, but it has been great, and really strong getting the team together. I’m quite confident, and I hope that next year is a big step.”

Asked what changes he wanted to see he added: “I don’t really want to tell! If you look just at the organisation there’s been a lot of work going in trying to get the team together. There’s a lot of new people, people change their position within the company. Usually those things take time, just so that everybody understands what to do, getting everything right in terms of timing as well, that has been the main challenge this year for the while team.

“Also I was new at the beginning, so that people understand my language, when I talk about the car, the behaviour of the car, the weaknesses. So I think there’s a possibility for us to improve. Obviously we’ve done a massive step on the engine, that’s ongoing.

“At the end we want to have the best engine and the best car, so there’s plenty of stuff to do. It’s no secret that we need a little bit more downforce than we currently have, but it’s more the organisation behind it.”

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Kimi Raikkonen: “I don’t think it was something completely stupid…”

Kimi Raikkonen was demoted from fifth to eighth place in the Russian GP results after being penalised for causing a collision with Valtteri Bottas.

The two Finns collided while battling for third on the last lap. Raikkonen managed to crawl across the line in fifth, but was subsequently given a 30 second penalty, and three points on his licence.

His demotion also meant that Ferrari was finally out of mathematical contention for the constructors’ title, leaving Mercedes confirmed as champions.

“I went inside and I think he never realised that I was there,” said Raikkonen. “Obviously at the last point I knew that he was just turning in so I tried to go more inside and I had brake harder to try to avoid it, but I was next to him already, so obviously there was contact.

“I don’t think it was something completely stupid. I want to try, for sure I would have made the corner, but obviously there were two cars. There are many ways of looking at the incident. I was there but obviously he didn’t know that I was there, and then you will have a contact. Unfortunate thing, not just for us for them also. You never want to have accidents, but things happen.”

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Sebastian Vettel: “We need to have a flawless weekend”

Sebastian Vettel is in optimistic mood heading into the Austrian GP weekend, although the Ferrari star concedes that he’ll only get a shot at victory if Mercedes under performs in some way.

“I think ideally we always try to fight for the win,” he said on Thursday. “I know that we have a strong package this year, a strong car, so if everything goes normal then we should be a little bit further up again, especially on Saturday this weekend.

“But we also have to be realistic [in] challenging the Mercedes. We know that first of all we need to have a flawless weekend, a perfect weekend and maybe hoping for them to have a little bit of a struggle. But in normal circumstances it is quite difficult to beat them as they are still the favourites going in, and there is still quite a big gap.”
Meanwhile Vettel conceded that he enjoyed his charge through the field in Canada.

“For sure it was more entertaining than the races before. It’s normal when you come from the back. Obviously first of all you go through cars that are slower than you. In general, obviously it was busier and at the end once I had my position I think I could extract a little bit more the pace of the car.

“But overall it was quite exciting and it was a good recovery, valuable points. We avoided all the risk in the opening lap which is always a bit messy if you are in the back of the field, but fortunately it all worked out and as I said we could get good points.”

Regarding prospects for the rest of the year he added: “First of all I think you have to see that it is natural that from track to track it might vary a bit but I think we’ve already done an incredible job. If you look at winter testing and where we are now, I think we consider ourselves to be quite a bit closer. Yeah, obviously it’s not that easy to make the gap smaller and smaller because Mercedes is a strong team, and obviously they are improving as well.

“They introduced a new spec of engine in Canada so they’re also making progress but our target for sure, is to make bigger progress to finally close the gap, so for sure, we are hoping that in the second part of the season, we are starting to get closer – closer than we are now.”

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