How did Ferrari turn their bad strategy reputation around?

Fred Vasseur explains how the Ferrari F1 team has improved their strategy and operational decisions.

Charles Leclerc (MON) Ferrari SF-24. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 4, Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan, Race Day.-
Charles Leclerc (MON) Ferrari SF-24. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 4,…

Ferrari F1 boss Fred Vasseur says added calmness and confidence has contributed to the team’s recent strategy success.

F1’s most famous team had developed an unwanted bad reputation regarding their strategy decisions having had their operational calls ridiculed over several seasons. But that has changed under the leadership of Vasseur, who has instilled a calmness to Ferrari’s pit wall.

Ferrari successfully recovered from an underwhelming qualifying to claim a 3-4 finish behind the Red Bull duo at the Japanese Grand Prix, with Charles Leclerc rising from eighth on the grid by pulling off a bold one-stop strategy. 

When asked what has changed in Ferrari’s strategy department, Vasseur told Sky Sports F1: "Part of this is the strategy, part of it is the tyre management because when you have the pace, it's easier to manage situations.

"This is coming with confidence. It's much more calm on the pit wall and it's the best way to take a good decision and everything is going in the same direction and it's a smooth environment.

"The situation is you have to put everything together and when you start to go in the right direction, everyone is pushing, everyone is more calm, everyone is more confident. It's the opposite when you have a negative spiral.

"We made a good step with the car during the winter and even the last part of last year. Everybody is much more confident in the team and more calm. We are doing a good job together.”

Frederic Vasseur (FRA) Ferrari Team Principal. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 4, Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan,
Frederic Vasseur (FRA) Ferrari Team Principal. Formula 1 World…

Ferrari tend to be Red Bull’s nearest challengers in qualifying but unusually struggled for one-lap pace at Suzuka, something Vasseur acknowledged the team needs to improve.

“It was a very good Sunday for the team. We had a good recovery after a bit of a difficult qualifying,” he said.

"We had a strong Sunday with a good strategy and good tyre management. If we want to do  a better weekend, we have to improve the Saturday more.”

Leclerc echoed Vasseur’s call to improve Ferrari’s qualifying performance but praised the team’s gains with tyre management and strategy this year.

"On the weekend as a whole, there were plenty of things we could have done better. One thing is the way we prepare the tyres for a qualifying lap," the Monegasque said.

"Yesterday I was happy with the lap but I just didn't have enough grip available and this is mostly coming from the lap before in the right window.

"That put us in a difficult situation for the rest of the weekend because starting P8, you can't do much more.

"We had amazing tyre management, amazing pace and an amazing strategy. It's just not enough when you start in P8."

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