Stefano Domenicali insists that Ferrari
has to push hard on the development of its 2013 car after losing ground in the F1 title race in Montreal.
Although Fernando Alonso
produced a strong drive to come through from sixth on the grid to second, and Felipe Massa
also scored despite starting down in 16th, Ferrari
lost ground in both championships – with Vettel now 36 points clear in the drivers' standings and Red Bull
56 ahead in the constructors' standings.
With that in mind, Domenicali insisted that Ferrari
had to push to keep pace with Red Bull
and also with the likes of Mercedes, who picked up a podium finish in Montreal thanks to Lewis Hamilton.
“We must also continue to push on the development of our car,” he said, “because our rivals have made clear steps forward. Apart from Red Bull, in Montreal, Mercedes was also very competitive, not just in qualifying over a single lap, but also over the whole race distance. We must give our drivers the wherewithal to fight for the front two rows of the grid, because that is the key to be able to capitalise on our car's race pace.
“Now we have a slightly longer than usual gap before the next race in Silverstone. We will try and use that time as well as possible to work on the car and continue studying tyre behaviour, because on Sunday we saw cars which were able to do two thirds of the race with just one set and therefore, understanding how the tyres will work at every circuit will require very close attention.”
Despite insisting it was vital to make up lost ground, Domenicali added that Ferrari
was pleased to be in championship contention with seven races now run this season.
“We have completed the first seven races of the 2013 season and we are in the fight for both the drivers' and constructors' titles,” he said. “Now we move into a phase were it will be vital to make up the ground we have lost, trying to put together a string of useful results. The opposition is numerous and very strong, but they too know our strengths.
“It will be a closely matched contest from race to race, on a variety of different circuit types with races held in different conditions. It's an exciting prospect and I don't think it will reach its conclusion until the very last race of the season.”