Reliability the number one priority for the Scuderia
Maranello, 9 November – The Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro crew split into two different groups after the Brazilian Grand Prix. The mechanics flew out of Sao Paolo on the night of Sunday to Monday and are now already on track at the Yas Marina Circuit. However, the engineers have made a brief stopover in Maranello where the usual post-race debrief took place this morning. The analysis of the Interlagos weekend did not throw up any particular suprises. In terms of performance, the aerodynamic updates introduced in Brazil produced the expected results but clearly, there is still a gap to our main rivals, at least in qualifying.
In race conditions however, the F10 is competitive at the highest level: if it had not been for the grid positions and the time lost in the dogfights with Hamilton and Hulkenberg, Fernando Alonso could have put the two Red Bulls under a lot more pressure. Felipe would also have had the potential to finish in the top five but the pit stop problem – a malfunction with the wheel gun when fitting the nut on the right front wheel – prevented him from proving what he could do.
Reliability was the main item on the engineers’ agenda. Clearly in a crucial race like the upcoming finale in Abu Dhabi, there can be no margin for error. It will be vital to avoid having any problems right from the start of the weekend, so as to prepare for qualifying and the race down to the smallest possible detail. Between this afternoon and tomorrow, the engineers will join the rest of the crew out in Abu Dhabi, with the drivers arriving in the evening on a direct flight from Sao Paolo.
Throughout the team, both in Maranello and at the track, everyone knows what is at stake, something they are well used to, given that in twelve of the past fourteen years the Scuderia has reached the final round having either already taken a title or still being in the hunt for it. Many elements and factors have changed within the actual team, but Ferrari is always there, at the top of the Formula 1 tree.