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Vasseur Crucial to Be Competitive from the Start

Vasseur: “Crucial to Be Competitive from the Start”

19/03/2024

Ferrari Team Principal Fred Vasseur emphasizes the importance of a strong start to the 2024 F1 season for building a competitive future.

Ferrari’s Formula 1 team principal, Fred Vasseur, believes the team’s promising start to the 2024 season is “significant” as it lays a strong foundation for future development.

Despite launching a mid-season concept change in 2023, Ferrari continued to face some inconsistency with its SF-23.

The Italian marque thus opted for a complete overhaul with its SF-24 to address encountered limitations. Ferrari achieved its aim, emerging as the strongest contender behind Red Bull, with Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc each securing a podium in the first two races.

However, as Max Verstappen maintains a considerable advantage, Vasseur suggested catching up to Red Bull quickly would be challenging.

“We have improvements in the pipeline but I’m sure we’re not the only ones. So, it will still take some time to catch up. But we are twice as close now.”

“If you look at last year, McLaren made a lot of progress during the season, but I think it was more about unlocking something initially rather than pure improvements. We are improving, but not by half a second. It means we are at a point with this car and these regulations where there’s a sort of performance convergence, and the development pace is much lower.”

“That’s why it’s crucial for us to be competitive from the start, to score good points because we had a slow start last year.”

“Today, I’m not focused on the championship at all, but we’ve scored about 45 points, and last year, after three races, we were at about 25. Getting off to a good start is important.”

The SF-24 allows the team to focus on enhancing performance rather than solving problems, according to him.

“I also think that the fact the car is, I don’t want to say easy to drive, but easier than a year ago, means we have a good base for development. The SF-24 is much easier for the drivers to read, making it much easier to understand where we need to improve.”

“In this situation, it’s a significant step forward overall because we can focus on performance this time.”

While Vasseur refrained from specifying when Ferrari would introduce the first updates to its SF-24, Leclerc ruled out the arrival of significant developments in Australia.

“I don’t think we will have many new things in Melbourne. So, with no new developments in Melbourne, we will do a good job by maximizing our package. That’s where we stand.”

“We will probably have to wait and see, whenever we get new parts on the car, what kind of progress we make. And I hope it will bring us closer to Red Bull.”

Vasseur: “Crucial to Be Competitive from the Start”. Vasseur: “Crucial to Be Competitive from the Start”

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