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British GP, Silverstone: Domenicali: We’re doing what we can

Ferrari hopes to challenge at Silverstone but team boss Stefano Domenicali says improved qualifying performance is a must
Ferrari team boss Stefano Domencali says the team is doing all it can to improve its qualifying performance to keep itself in contention in the F1 title race.

The team heads into the British Grand Prix this weekend having lost ground further ground to Red Bull in the title race in recent races.

While the F138 has been strong so far this season on race day, qualifying has proven to be something of an Achilles heel but Domenicali said the team was working hard to extract more one-lap pace from the car to make forward progress.

“We are trying our best,” he said. “Our engineers are working very hard on this front, because we know we cannot let our drivers always start far back on the grid, otherwise doing a lot of overtaking moves isn't much use.

“The aim is to at least be consistently on the top two rows. Obviously, we would like to always start from pole, which would make everything much easier and that would be even more the case when you consider our car's potential in the race itself.”

Domenicali added that he was confident of his team being on the pace this weekend at Silverstone, although – as has been the norm this year – he said a lot would be down to the performance of the Pirelli tyres.

“Our aim is to close the gaps to the lead in the next three races,” he said. “I think we will be competitive in Silverstone, as we have been in the recent past at this track, but there are so many factors to take into account.

“The tyres? It will depend a lot on the weather and the temperature. The team is calm and focused: we know we must get a good result but we are used to this type of pressure.”

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June 27, 2013 10:55 AM

I agree with KevinW. Qualifying performance is the only weakness of Alonso. Nobody is perfect. Is true that from time to time Alonso is able to extract the maximum out of his car in qualifying but he is unable to do that consistently. Other outstanding drivers too have had their weaknesses. Schumacher was unable to make good starts and usually he didn't gained positions at the start, he even lost them often. Vettel looks unable to win a race if he isn't running 1st at the end of the first lap. Hamilton looks unable to perform consistently fast at every race of the season. Sometimes he is uncatchable but to many times he had got beaten by his team-mates Alonso, Button, Rosberg. Raikkonen is consistent but sometimes lacks the killer instict and just settles for 2nd or 3rd without fighting until the end.


June 27, 2013 1:04 AM

Take a hard statistical look at the age of the top 4-5 grid positions in the races between 2008 and now. It's very hard to ignore the data indicating that top slot qualifying is a young drivers game, seated in quick cars. Ferrari may have to accept that while Alonso is an outstanding talent on race day, qualifying is as much a problem with his one-lap performance as it is with anything engineers can fix.

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