Formula 1
Ferrari’s season of ups and downs, confusion, & readjusted expectations

Ferrari’s season of ups and downs, confusion, & readjusted expectations

Fred Vasseur has had a tough first Formula 1 season with Ferrari. Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz have done a good job with a difficult car.
Ferrari went from challenging for the title in 2022 to scoring just 3 podiums in 2023 so far. Charles Leclerc has said how the team had to readjust expectations and is already looking at 2024.

Ferrari has fallen from grace in the 2023 Formula 1 season. Last season, Charles Leclerc was fighting for the championship. Carlos Sainz even scored his first victory. This season, the Maranello-based team has found things tough. Under the leadership of new team principal Fred Vasseur, they have scored just 3 podiums and currently sit 4th in the constructor standings.

Their Season So Far

Ferrari have found themselves amid a congested upper midfield in Formula 1. Red Bull being so far ahead means that even the 2nd position is now best of the rest. And Ferrari find themselves 4th in the standings with just 3 podiums. They are behind Mercedes and new challengers Aston Martin.

Ferrari has a new team principal this season. Fred Vasseur took over from Mattia Binotto and has found the going tougher than his predecessor. The team’s performance has clearly regressed. However, the communication issues within the team persist. The drivers are regularly questioning the strategy and have been at the receiving end of various incidents involving poor communication.

Fred Vasseur has had a tough first Formula 1 season with Ferrari. Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz have done a good job with a difficult car.

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Driver Performances

Ferrari once again has a decent qualifying car, especially in the hands of Charles Leclerc. The Monegasque got pole for both races in Azerbaijan. He inherited another pole in Belgium after Max Verstappen’s penalty. However, he has also had a lot more incidents this season. He has had a few retirements, and his poor driving in mixed conditions has been a bone of contention.

Carlos Sainz has been more consistent. The Spaniard has shown more frustration with Ferrari than Leclerc on his radio. This might be because Leclerc often gets the better strategy, even on weekends when Sainz has the upper hand. Sainz would have had a podium if not for a terrible penalty by the FIA in Australia for a lap that didn’t even count.

How has the car evolved?

The car has had extreme sensitivity all season long. Their track-to-track performance has varied a lot. On some tracks, even different tyres have altered their performance. The upgrades in Spain have made things more stable, although it’s still a handful. Their next upgrades are due for Qatar/Austin.

Also Read: Fred Vasseur lays down timeline for Ferrari upgrades, sets sights on 2024

Predictions

Ferrari has one of the most balanced driver lineups. Therefore, we can expect them to be consistently up there whenever the car allows it. However, Ferrari needs to sort out its structural problems if they are to consistently fight at the front.

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