Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Circuit de Catalunya, 2020

Ferrari: We are not as fast as our rivals

2020 F1 season

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Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto says he isn’t as optimistic about the team’s position as he was during last year’s tests.

[f1tv2020testa]The team’s analysis of testing lap times so far compared to its rivals indicates Ferrari are not as quick as the pace setters.

“Simply looking at the delta pace and eventually what we may assess in terms of fuel load – which you never know in terms of engine modes, et cetera – looking at the picture relative to ourselves, I think we are not as fast as they are,” said Binotto.

“I’m not as optimistic as last year,” he added. “The others are faster than us at the moment I believe.

“How much faster I think it’s really difficult to judge. We will go through all the data in the next days. But I don’t think we are as fast as them at the moment.”

He said it won’t become clear until later in the test exactly where the team is compared to the likes of Mercedes and Red Bull.

“Do we have any concerns? Certainly yes, when you are not as fast as you would like to be. But I think it’s really too early stage to define them and to understand.

“So these three days for us have been very important because at least we have collected all the data now to have a clear picture and better understanding. What will be even more important is to make sure that we are developing the car in the right direction.

“Having said that, it’s a very long season, 22 races potentially, so I think there will be time as well to recover eventually. But let’s wait for next week and let’s wait for Australia before to assess what’s the true performance of everybody.”

However Binotto admitted the team have “not looked yet for the performance” and “not optimised the car around the ideal optimum set-up.”

“I think that will be clearer next week,” he added, indicating the team is not planning any major updates for the SF1000 between now and the first race of the year.

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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28 comments on “Ferrari: We are not as fast as our rivals”

  1. Not sure if they’re actually screwed or trying to ‘pull a Mercedes’ there …

    1. I think they’re screwed. The last time they made major changes in a stable regulation environment, it went poorly as well.

      Right now, it’s looking like the RP W10 might beat them.

    2. I never draw conclusions after first test, or even first few races.

      But if you search Internet, you will find that rumors had it even before testing started. How much truth in them – unknown.

      1. @dallein The Ferrari chief does. Who should we go with?

      2. I think they’re screwed. The last time they made major changes in a stable regulation environment, it went poorly as well.

        Major changes? What major changes? It’s a genuine struggle to tell this year’s Ferrari from last years and that one went pretty well!

  2. What’s the Italian for sandbag?

    1. Mercedes?

      1. Good one!

      2. @dallein (claps in admiration)

        Personally I called it first morning and I’ve been expecting it at launch. You only need an eye to see that a few teams have taken big steps, worked hard, make visible changes to their cars and one made few. I still believe, they might have potential but even RB has gone for the merc nose with a medium cape, why couldn’t Ferrari see what McLaren saw last year when they came in with a copy merc nose, now every independent well funded team has the merc nose.

    2. Sachetto di sabbia

      (fingers crossed it’s only sandbagging)

  3. Mission Whatnow? Perhaps they need to copy last year’s Mercedes.
    Or introduce an innovative new steering system operated by the seat of the pants. Left cheek forward to tack right, Right cheek to spin …
    (Let’s hope they are just sandbagging again)

  4. Is Binotto playing Toto’s game???

    Because it seems that Mercedes is not playing any games this year. Just plain speed.

    For the sake of the show I really hope Ferrari is holding its potential.

    Or those rumors of poor aero performance at the factory were true?

    1. The worrying thing is I think Mercedes are still sandbagging.

      1. hahaha, i think so too

    2. I think Ferrari are sandbagging because last year was very embarrassing after the promise of pre-season testing

      1. Sandbagging 2.5sec? Not even Williams could do that I think…;-)

  5. “Toto-talk” or actual concern?

    The car looks very, very pretty on the pictures.

  6. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    21st February 2020, 15:10

    Oh well this sounds positive for Ferrari fans!

  7. Dutchguy (@justarandomdutchguy)
    21st February 2020, 15:16

    now Ferrari is also downplaying their chances.

    If it goes on like this, F1 will be so full of self-proclaimed underdogs it’s a miracle anyone manages to win a race.

    1. In five year’s time teams will be pulling out of the garages during the testing just ten minutes before the end of the day.

      1. going at our current rate, they wont need to test anything anyways in five years time as f1 will just be another spec series anyway

  8. Another 2009 incoming.

    1. Or even worse, another 2014

  9. I think it’s just sad that the race year is over before it is begun. Sure great invention. But I want close racing…

  10. Whether he means it or not, I see that there is a huge potential this year for teams to just give up and focus on next year if one team turns out to be massively ahead after the first few races.

    For many, even big teams like Ferrari, there just won’t be any value in spending money trying to catch up.

  11. Cristiano Ferreira
    22nd February 2020, 5:28

    I dont know if Binotto is telling the truth or not, but its hard to believe that this car is slower than the last one that even the W10 from Racing Point is going to beat them.

    To me they are sandbagging, at least I hope so. Either that or they are going to bring an spec 2 car for the next week or spec 3 to Melbourne.

    I know we are talking about Ferrari but i refuse to believe they are so much incompentent.

  12. Rashmil Rajagopalan
    23rd February 2020, 17:52

    I strongly believe Ferrari is sandbagging. They’ve got an improved downforce and so are much better with their cornering speeds. As for the straight line, Haas topped and Alfa Romeo wasn’t far behind. The Ferrari engine is still out there in terms of performance. Maybe the 2nd test, or Australia will be the true reveal.

Comments are closed.