Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Monaco, 2019

Ferrari sticking with novel front wing concept despite disappointing start to season

2019 Monaco Grand Prix

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Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto says the team won’t give up on its novel front wing concept, which differs from that used by rivals Mercedes and Red Bull.

Following the team’s failure to win any of the first five races Binotto admitted they may have to rethink the concept behind their SF90. But he said today he still believes in the philosophy behind their front wing.

“I think we do not need to change our front wing,” he said. “Certainly it’s a different concept to Mercedes but it doesn’t mean that we have achieved the maximum of its concept today. So we are not at the moment foreseeing to change the wing concept.

“The Mercedes style was checked at the start of our concept, it’s a comparison we did at the very start which is for one way of development. Certainly through the seasons you always try to double check back what you did and [if] it’s still the right choice but we do not foresee a change right now.”

However Binotto admitted the team is rethinking the goals behind its aerodynamic development programme as it tries to improve its performance, including how it manages the temperature in its tyres.

“In testing in Barcelona we got already some upgrades in the car,” he said. “Now I think it’s time to question ourselves if we should look for different aero targets, how to achieve the final performance.”

Although the team cites its tyre management as part of the reason for its lack of performance, Binotto believes the key to turning its season around lies in its hands.

“I think the performance, it’s pure [a] technical [matter]. So no doubt that the ingredients are all technical and they are in our control.

“Obviously you need to optimise the tyres’ performance but the tyres are common to all the teams. So at the end I think it’s down to each single team to develop the car to optimise the full package.”

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Gabriele Koslowski
Gabriele Koslowski first began following Formula 1 during the early noughties, and is a director of a Belgian motorsport media company. During the past...
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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13 comments on “Ferrari sticking with novel front wing concept despite disappointing start to season”

  1. Obviously you need to optimise the tyres’ performance but the tyres are common to all the teams. So at the end I think it’s down to each single team to develop the car to optimise the full package.”

    I appreciate this statement by Binotto, not just pointing fingers at Pirelli.

    1. +1

      He could have easily insinuated that Pirelli favoured the Mercs, as some believe Meecedes and Pirelli jointly made these tyres. Fact is you work with what you are given.

      1. i bet you didnt say the same about skimmed tires last year for the 3 GP and probably didn’t criticize lewis for asking the same tires for the rest of the season or for 2019

        1. The same tyres Vettel confirmed also worked better on the Ferrari after testing revealed the old gauge would have suffered blistering on the Ferrari as well

          1. he said they would have suffered blistering… he didnt say more or less blistering than mercedes..

          2. BlackJackFan
            24th May 2019, 5:59

            “He said, he said…!”
            And I bet your dad’s bigger than my dad… lol

          3. @j3d89, what he said was “Now with the data we had today and I think the result is if we had the normal tyres on Sunday we’d be even worse off. So I think it was the correct call and it was our fault not to have the same tyre wear or life as other people.”

            He then went on to talk about how Ferrari were the ones that needed to take action to rectify their issues, including managing their tyre life better than they had done in Barcelona.

            With regards to blistering, Ferrari were pretty much the only team that was suffering from such extreme tyre blistering. The thin gauge tyres did blister a bit during the race, hence the need for a two stop strategy, but the post race tests were much worse (hence Vettel’s comments about how Ferrari would have been even worse off and that the thin gauge tyres were the right ones to use).

    2. georgeboole (@)
      23rd May 2019, 21:31

      They are being to honest this year but the point is by the time they identify the problem the championship will be over

  2. if the main problem is the slow corners, wouldnt that mean that they need more mechanical grip and that replacing the front wing design is useless because at slow speed aero is “less” important..

  3. I think the merc and red bull went that way with the front wing to better manage the tire temps. They hid it as a aero change, but I suspect keeping the airflow from hitting the front tire at high speed keeps the front tires hot longer down the straight. so when they start braking for the turn, the front tires heat up that much quicker, and less flat spotting.

    1. This is what I thought right away. More air cooling the front tire lower temps.

  4. Wise choice, please stick with the current package and optimize the PU as far as possible. Give-up on those slow corners track, keep focusing on top speed. Please challenge Mercedes on top speed power tracks such as Belgium and Monza, as you did on Bahrain. We need Ferrari to focus on top speed and let Red Bull take care on slow corners track to stop Mercedes domination.

    1. Matteo (@m-bagattini)
      24th May 2019, 9:18

      /s, right?

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