Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali has said the Scuderia has a 'clear goal' for F1 2013, and that is to give Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa the means to compete at the 'highest level'.
Although Alonso successfully took the fight for the Drivers' title to the wire last year, he ultimately lost out to Sebastian Vettel and, by season end, the Adrian Newey-designed Red Bull was increasingly dominant.
Speaking to the press today at the launch of the new Ferrari F138, Domenicali added that the squad definitely doesn't want to start 2013 like 2012, when it was on the backfoot and forced to play catch-up.
“There are areas of development on the [new] car which will be very important, from now until the end of the year. We have a clear goal, which is to give Fernando and Felipe a competitive car, at the highest level. Then, it will be our drivers and the team that can make the difference,” he stated.
“Our approach from the first race on must be the right one and we must be mentally ready to deal with very tense moments.
“We definitely don't want to find ourselves having to fight like last year to close down a 1.6 second gap to the fastest.
“[But] if we come up against surprises in the early part of the season, we will try and stay focused, prioritising the reasons why things have not gone as expected.
“Better to concentrate our efforts on ourselves and ensure we manage the tension, otherwise there's the risk of giving a helping hand to those who are fighting the same battle with the same aims.”
As for the development programme for the F138, Domenicali acknowledged there will be a need to find a balance, given the rules will change so much for 2014.
“According to our planning, there will nothing too revolutionary [with work on the F138], but rather an implementation of what we have seen so far. In my opinion a serious team has to focus on the fact that, in 2014 we face a completely different season in terms of the regulations and therefore, we must concentrate on bringing into play the right resources,” he explained.