Ferrari praised for “calmness” and “less chaos” with strategy despite McLaren defeat

Despite losing out to McLaren in China, Ferrari's strategy team has been praised for their "calmness".

Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Ferrari SF-24 makes a pit stop. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 5, Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai,
Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Ferrari SF-24 makes a pit stop. Formula 1 World…

Sky Sports F1 pundit Karun Chandhok has praised Ferrari for their “calmness” on the pit wall when making strategy decisions despite their defeat to McLaren in China.

Ferrari came away from Shanghai with fourth and fifth, finishing behind the two Red Bulls and Lando Norris, who drove a spectacular race to split Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez.

Heading into the weekend, Ferrari were tipped to hold the advantage over McLaren given the Woking outfit’s weakness in low-speed, traction zones.

However, it didn’t play out that way as Norris finished well clear of the best Ferrari on Sunday.

Still, Ferrari maintained their impressive start to the year with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz finishing all five races inside the top five.

Reflecting on Ferrari’s weekend in China, Chandhok was impressed with how the team fared on the pit wall while explaining that their performance in China is unlikely going to be a common trend.

“There is a calmness,” he said. “There seems to be less chaos with strategy.

“We have to be careful with this track, it is an outlier in terms of the layout and how the tyres are used, and the energy on the front axle rather than the rear.

“It is a weird track, trying to read the form guide. So I think they’ll take fourth and fifth.”

George Russell (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W15 and Charles Leclerc (MON) Ferrari SF-24 battle for position. Formula 1 World
George Russell (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W15 and Charles Leclerc (MON) Ferrari…

Since the Sebastian Vettel days, strategy has been something Ferrari have struggled with.

Particularly, their confusing communication between race engineer and driver.

But under Frederic Vasseur’s leadership, things seem to have improved, highlighted by their consistent run of results.

1996 F1 world champion Damon Hill believes the battle between Ferrari and McLaren will continue to be “tight” for the rest of the season.

“A lot was made of Charles’ run in Suzuka,” he added. “But he was in a gap in clean air. You can eke out a good result if you qualify well and do one stop when everyone else does two.

“If you’re in a race, you need a car with an advantage. In [today’s] race they weren’t as good as the McLaren in the hands of Lando. So they are about the same, it will be tight between these two.”

Read More