Ferrari chief Mattia Binotto won’t sit down after the disappointing home race at Imola, as Ferrari only took points with one car and could not have made it difficult for Red Bull at any point. “We still have a competitive car.”
Expectations were high. Ferrari has been out of action this season, with two wins in three races and a huge gap over Mercedes and Red Bull in the constructors’ championship. Ferrari had hoped Imola would keep up a good start to the season, but came home from a cold show.
Max Verstappen took first, winning the sprint and main sprint race on Sunday, ahead of Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez. Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz was eliminated at the start of the race after being taken away by Daniel Ricciardo in Tamburillo, so Charles Leclerc had to keep the honor high. But Monegask was very careful, skipping over the barriers at Variante Alta a lot and getting off the track. He kept his car running, but had to get new tires and finished sixth. This was not the outcome Mattia Binotto was hoping for.
“It’s part of racing these kinds of competitions,” Binotto says discreetly† “Some races are not going well and that was the day,” the Swiss-born Italian wrote. “But we still only have a competitive car and we have to remain optimistic.” Sky Sports F1†
Ferrari chose to go ahead in attack to beat Sergio Perez and so they called in Leclerc for soft tyres. Red Bull responded immediately and Perez remained in second place. However, this extra stopping point was not intended to set the fastest lap in the race, says Binotto. “It was the best option for us,” said the Ferrari team boss. “We wanted another chance to beat Perez. We knew Red Bull would react, but that way Charles could launch another attack.”
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