Faster tyre degradation makes Ferrari lose in races

Faster tyre degradation makes Ferrari lose in races

Mattia Binotto was left to lament Ferrari’s race pace at the Italian Grand Prix when Auto Motor und Sport published a damning condemnation that declared Ferrari can’t win anymore.

Charles Leclerc qualified first for Sunday’s 53-lap Monza race, making the Monégasque driver P1 for the eighth time this season, but he was unable to keep up with Max Verstappen’s pace.

Ferrari was aware of this and decided to take a chance by making an early pit stop when the Virtual Safety Car was deployed on lap 12; this put Leclerc on a two-stop strategy.

However, he was unable to overtake Verstappen even with the brand-new set of soft tyres he put on at his second stop. He was 16 seconds off the lead when the Safety Car was deployed, putting a halt to the day’s racing. Since the Red Bull RB18 was moving so quickly, team boss Binotto acknowledges that Ferrari had nothing to lose by taking a chance on Leclerc’s plan.

“The Red Bull was the faster car, if we had gone up against him with the same strategy, we would never have beaten him,” Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto said. “Two stops were basically not wrong because you never know what will happen later in the race… For us, playing poker was without risk.”

“Since the Hungarian Grand Prix, the Red Bull has been the better car. Not on Saturday but in the race… Our tyres degrade faster.”

“They get a better balance than us and we have to work hard to understand that.”

Leclerc, 24, lost points once more as Verstappen’s lead in the standings increased to 116, forcing him to settle for second place at Ferrari’s home event.

The severe tyre degradation of the F1-75 is Ferrari’s biggest issue, according to Michael Schmidt of Auto Motor und Sport.

“Ferrari can’t win anymore, It’s still enough for pole position but no longer for victory,” he wrote. “The speed in the F1-75 is still there, but over the distance the red car eats its tyres… That puts all the trump cards in Max Verstappen’s hand.”

“Monza was no exception. Even if Charles Leclerc gave the Tifosi hope, it was deceptive.”

“Ferrari suspect the aerodynamics – that the search for more downforce has reduced the working window and thus the scope for set-up,” he added.

However, while Carlos Sainz gained 13 positions on Sunday while racing from the back of the grid to fourth, teammate Charles Leclerc lost one.

Ferrari is still second in the Constructors’ Championship, but it is 139 points behind Red Bull, and the Spaniard is in fifth place with 187 points.

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