Human errors cannot be eliminated from Formula 1, Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali has warned – despite it arguably having been just such 'human errors' that ultimately cost Felipe Massa the 2008 world championship crown.
Refuelling issues in Hungary and – with far more dramatic consequences – Singapore significantly harmed Massa's challenge for the laurels during the course of the campaign, with the Brazilian in the end coming up just one point shy of glory.
Whilst insisting that tireless work has taken place over the winter months in an effort to ensure that quality control is further tightened and such mistakes are not repeated in 2009, Domenicali admitted that there will always be some margin for error.
“The procedural reliability is part of the overall reliability,” he mused during the Mugello launch of the new F60, so named to commemorate the fact that the Scuderia
will be the only team to have competed in all 60 editions of the world championship since its official inception back in 1950.
“Human errors remain a characteristic of the team and the drivers, which gives a certain humanity to racing. We have tried to improve the procedures and we have introduced people from different areas to improve the procedures and increase concentration – but human error will always be a part.
“Ours is a logic of dynamic stability, promoted by our president; the organisation's modifications go in this direction – to improve every single aspect of the team, whilst strengthening the areas where we didn't give 100 per cent at the same moment. It will be a very interesting year for all of us as far as our sport is concerned.”
Recognising the fact that in the current economic climate it is 'a difficult moment' for F1, Domenicali also backed up Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo's assertion that the complicated new KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems) technology is an expensive 'contradiction-in-terms' at a time when slashing expenditure is the primary concern.
“First of all I want to make a political consideration as far as the KERS is concerned,” the Italian underlined. “Our position, which we discussed with other teams, is that in a moment when one has to reduce costs, the introduction of such a system is a contradiction-in-terms.
“We can decide if we want to use KERS in our car and when it's clear that the system will effectively improve the performance, which it seems to do in simulations, it will be our task and technical challenge to push on with it. Today is a very important day also as far as this system is concerned, and we're testing the new system on the track. I don't expect any surprises, but we'll definitely see the problems when it's used on the track.