Alle Meldungen 2019

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09 | 05 | 2019 GP Spanien / GP Spain Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc arrived in Barcelona today, prior to the start of track action tomorrow for the fifth round of the season. The two Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow drivers will have their first taste of the new power unit fitted to the SF90 as well as further aerodynamic updates, following on from the first lot of changes introduced in Baku a fortnight ago.

Walking into the weekend. Mid-morning found Sebastian and Charles tackling their first lap of the track, at walking pace to get a close up of any changes made to the Montmelo circuit, even if it holds no real secrets, being the home of winter testing. After the usual weekend planning briefings with the engineers, Sebastian was on the panel of the official FIA press conference, clearly ready for a good fight in Spain. “The morale and atmosphere in the team is high. We have further updates here on top of those brought to Baku and I think we can be competitive. I have always thought we have a very strong package, but we have just struggled a bit to put everything together and be quickest.”

With the media. A bit later, it was Charles’ turn to be quizzed by the journalists, this time in the team’s motorhome. The Monegasque driver confirmed his team-mate’s view of the team’s will to all pull together and fight back. “We are extremely united and you can feel it in the dynamic of the team. I think, a bit like recent events in the Champions’ League, where a club came back when facing a huge task, in our team too, the will to turn things around after a less than easy start from the results point of view, is there. We will give it our best shot.”

Free practice tomorrow. Tomorrow sees the event come to life with the first free practice session starting at 11 and the second one at 15. On Saturday, qualifying gets underway at 3pm, after the final hour of practice, which starts at noon. The 49th Spanish Grand Prix starts on Sunday at 15.10.

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Foto © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre

28 | 04 | 2019 GP Aserbaidschan / GP Azerbaijan  Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow leaves Azerbaijan having taken its third podium finish of the season, but with a sense of regret at not getting a better result. Sebastian Vettel finished third for the second consecutive race, while Charles Leclerc, starting back in eighth because of his qualifying mistake, worked his way up to fifth and, at one point even led the race for 19 laps. He also took the point for setting the race fastest lap.
Sebastian maintained his third place off the grid, while Charles, on the Medium tyres dropped from eighth to tenth but, from the second lap began a great climb up the order. He picked off his rivals at the rate of one per lap, despatching them in the order Daniel Ricciardo, Daniil Kvyat, Carlos Sainz, Lando Norris, Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen, to move to third place, by the time Vettel pitted on lap 11. Shortly afterwards, Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton pitted to go from Softs to Mediums and that saw Charles in the lead.
At this point, the team opted to lengthen Leclerc’s stint as much as possible, in case a Safety Car period would mean the Monegasque driver could pit losing less time and could thus set off in attacking mode for the final stint. The opportunity never arose and Charles came in on lap 34, rejoining sixth behind Pierre Gasly, whom he took one lap to pass.
In the closing stages, Sebastian managed his lead over Max Verstappen, to finish third behind Bottas and Hamilton. Charles was running unchallenged in fifth and therefore on lap 47, he pitted for fresh tyres to go for the fastest lap of the race. He did it, setting a new track record of 1’43”009. It was Ferrari’s 250th fastest lap in Formula 1. The next round takes place in two weeks’ time in Spain.

Sebastian Vettel #5 “That was fun driving today, although not so much in the first stint when I couldn’t get the tyres to work and I didn’t have as much grip as I’d expected. We were not quick and the performance was uneven because I damaged the tyres trying to get them up to temperature and then, once they were there, they didn’t give the performance I’d expected because, they were damaged. After the pit stop I really got a good pace and I had fun because I felt the car was fully under control and I felt free to push, even if it wasn’t enough to put our rivals under pressure. At the restart following the Virtual Safety Car, I set my fastest lap and I managed to get the gap to Verstappen to a second. I think that by then he realised he couldn’t attack me and so I was able to drop the pace a bit in the closing laps. Our pace was alright today, but not good enough. The whole team is working to the maximum and so I feel confident. I believe in this team and I know we can improve. We have a good car, but we’re not using it in the way to get the results we should be getting. It’s like a Rubik’s cube where you have to have everything in the right order. We have a lot of clever people in the team who could solve that puzzle in less than two minutes, but in this case the cube is a bit bigger.”

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Foto © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre

27 | 04 | 2019 GP Aserbaidschan / GP AzerbaijanThe Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow SF90s will start the Azerbaijan Grand Prix from the second and fifth rows of the grid, when the race starts at 16.10 (14.10 CET).

Q1. Both drivers comfortably made the cut to Q2, doing three times laps each on just one set of Soft tyres. Charles did a 1’42”652, which he then improved on by over a second, doing a 1’41”426. Unfortunately, Sebastian had to abort his first run because of yellow flags in Sector 1, doing a 1’42”347 followed by a 1’42”042 before pitting.

Q2. In the second session, Leclerc and Vettel went out on Medium tyres. On his first attempt, Charles did an excellent 1’41”995, while Sebastian made a slight mistake and therefore posted a 1’43”355. Charles set off for another quick lap but ended up in the wall at Turn 8, which brought out the red flags. When the session restarted, the track surface was getting progressively cooler. Sebastian went out on the Softs and did a 1’42”209 and then a 1’41”889, which was good enough to get into the top ten shoot-out for pole position.

Q3. In the final 10 minutes of qualifying, Sebastian made two runs; a 1’41”124 and then a 1’40”797 to improve in the final seconds of the session. It was good enough for him to start from third on the grid, behind a front row made up of Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton. Charles Leclerc’s car is currently being repaired by the mechanics and will line up on the ninth spot on the grid, the first of those who will start the race on the Medium tyres. In fact, the time Charles set in Q2 before crashing remained the sixth fastest overall, which is how he qualified for Q3, even though he took no part in it.

Sebastian Vettel #5 “It was a tough call in the end. When the track temperature dropped the car balance changed and getting the tyres to work for that one lap, especially after such a long straight before starting the lap, was not easy. With the clock ticking down, everybody was banking on the last run and getting a tow so at some point I had to make the call; do I prioritise my tyres or the tow? Which would have meant compromising the outlap and I didn’t have the feeling that I could afford that and I wanted to have a clean shot. My first Q3 run was ok, but on the second run I didn’t have anybody to tow me along, so I dealt with it just focusing on my lap and obviously I lost quite a lot, about four tenths, compared to the previous lap. But that’s what happens at this track. It was a tricky session. I saw Charles in the barrier and realised qualifying was over for him. It was a shame to lose one of our cars. In the end, we are one team and everybody is working extremely hard no matter which side of the garage you are on. Anyway, we need to turn the page as tomorrow is a new day and it’s a long race where anything can happen. As a team we can recover and put our rivals under pressure. Overall I feel we have a strong car so we can go and race hard and should have some fun.”

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Foto © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre

26 | 04 | 2019 GP Aserbaidschan / GP Azerbaijan

Friday at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix was pretty much a half day, given that the scheduled three hours of track time was reduced to slightly less than 90 minutes. The first session was stopped after 13 minutes when a manhole cover came loose in the first sector of the 6.003 km long track, and did not re-start. Then, in the second session, there were two red flag interruptions, which reduced the scheduled time by 18 minutes. Therefore one cannot read too much into the lap times, as teams had to adjust their programmes to fit the available time.

FP1. In the first session, Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow was the only team to set a time. Charles Leclerc did 5 laps with a best time of 1’47”497. Sebastian Vettel did four, the fastest being a 1’49”598. Both drivers used the Medium tyre.

FP2. All the teams tried to make the most of the afternoon session. Charles and Sebastian worked on an evaluation of some aero updates fitted to the SF90. Then they focussed on set-up for the race and qualifying, using the Medium and Soft compounds, setting their fastest laps on the latter, doing 28 laps each. Charles did the fastest lap of the day in 1’42”872 and Sebastian was second in 1’43”196.

Sebastian Vettel #5 “It was a rather complicated Friday, because we weren’t able to do much running and the track was slippery and dusty. But it was fun all the same. So it took a while to get into a rhythm but overall I feel comfortable with the car. Maybe tomorrow we should be able to get a better idea of where we stand, because while I felt good in the car, there’s definitely still room for improvement. Tomorrow, we will continue working as it’s vital to get into a rhythm and have a good feel for the car and be totally confident about the track. I think qualifying will be very close, because I imagine our rivals will be very fast tomorrow.”

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Foto © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre 

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