Felipe Massa may have claimed that he saw potential in Ferrari's F2012 after two days of testing at Jerez, but the Scuderia's continued restraint when it comes to chasing lap times suggests otherwise.
Fernando Alonso took over from Massa on day three of the opening group test, but the F2012 remained mired in seventh spot on the timesheets as Ferrari steadfastly focused on understanding the handling of the car.
Denied the chance to give the car a shakedown at Fiorano immediately after its launch last week, the Prancing Horse began the four-day session in southern Spain slowly and deliberately, but the pace has yet to pick up significantly, with Alonso's best lap only matching Massa's 1min 20.4secs.
Technical director Pat Fry echoed Massa's admission that there was 'room for improvement', and pointed the finger of blame at the Scuderia's troublesome windtunnel.
"There's reasonable correlation," he explained to the BBC
, "[but] I certainly wouldn't say it was perfect. There is still room for improvement. I don't think I could ever sit here and say it's perfect. We have found some more issues since we have been here."
Fry insisted that the team's decision to include pull-rod suspension at the front of the car as well as the rear was not a factor in its problems, despite the need to rethink the entire machine giving it more work to do in the limited amount of pre-season testing available.
"The basic platform is okay," Fry maintained, "We are looking at the various characteristics of some of the bits we have to test. We can play around with the three corner characteristics, so we can do different things at corner entry, mid-corner to exit, and it is really trying to find the right balance of those things.
"On each run, we are trying almost a different configuration. There is a lot of analysis here and then back at the factory. We are using the simulation and the simulator to make sure everything ties in, so we can put the right package together.
"With only twelve days of testing before the first race, we have to make the most of all the time we have got. [For that reason], we are not concentrating on taking the fuel out and trying to set a lap time."