Carlo Vanzini, well-known commentator and pundit for Sky Sport F1, confidently asserts that in the upcoming season “Red Bull won’t dominate as they did in 2023,” revealing confirmation of “notable progress” from Ferrari.
Carlo Vanzini’s comments
Here’s the journalist’s analysis, present in the latest issue of Autosprint magazine: “Amidst fake news and clickbait posts, this year has exploded in a crescendo of anticipation and expectations for Ferrari.”
“Then came the bangs: from ‘passing crash tests, Red Bull not yet’ to ‘The SF24 (or whatever it will be called) is faster by 7 tenths in the simulator,’ or, not least, Carlos Sainz stating, ‘The team is making progress, and if we manage to make another one in 2024, we’ll be in the fight,’ in an interview with the Spanish DIARIO AS.”
“The ‘we’ll be in the fight’ has been translated by many into ‘we’ll fight for the Championship,’ which is not quite the same thing but enough to start raising the bar of the ambitions of Ferrari fans, condemned but never subdued, to the iconic phrase ‘we will win next year,’ for now, 15 years running.”
“It’s incredible how the enthusiasm of the fans of the Scuderia becomes incredibly powerful from the first day of every new year and leads to resetting the fresh disappointments. Until the track delivers the first verdicts, the Prancing Horse, in the collective imagination, is Championship material, regardless. Personally, a quick aside, I believe Ferrari is the F1 Championship, regardless of the position it holds; without it, it wouldn’t be Formula 1.”
“So, for Red Bull to be beatable, at this point even by McLaren, Mercedes, and let’s add Aston Martin, the planets have to align, or simply the following options need to happen: Red Bull has already reached the maximum expression of this generation of cars, and the others have closed the gap, possible, not to be excluded…”.
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“Or, at Red Bull, caught up in visions of omnipotence, they completely mess up the new project, already less credible, but a film already seen for Newey in 2003 when he designed the McLaren MP4-18, presented as a gem but remained impossible to refine and therefore never raced that season. The MP4-17 was resurrected, allowing Kimi Raikkonen to vie for the title.”
“Given that RB could even present the 2023 car and start with an advantage, as Ferrari did in 2003, fielding the F2002 at the beginning, before putting the F2003-GA, named in honor of the recent passing of lawyer Agnelli, in the hands of Schumacher and Barrichello.” – the journalist added.
“There is optimism within the GES; I can confirm this, but there is also the desire to keep everything very ‘low profile,’ given the knocks taken in 2023. Ferrari, historically descending in the final stages of championships, has thus reversed the trend, closing on an upward trajectory and, above all, with encouraging signs of understanding.”
“The hope is that the ‘we need to understand’ has been finally and definitively consigned to the archives of Ferrari’s dark history. Yes, from Fred Vasseur down, they understood and paved the way for the comeback. The rumors seem to confirm this trend, but there is a desire to stay firmly grounded: ‘yes, we have made remarkable progress, but better not say anything…’ I heard off the record, and such they have remained and will remain, except for this little spoiler.” – he pointed out.
“It’s logical; the direct punches from Max Bull taken full in the face by everyone still hurt. To manage to get off the ropes or rise from the canvas like Rocky Balboa doesn’t mean you beat Verstappen, who remains solidly in the center of the ring ready to strike again, but it allows you to be there, not to be out for K.O.” – the Italian journalist continued.
“So, easy. Until the first tests and, above all, the first races, to the question ‘Is this the good year?’ sorry, but my reaction will remain the same, with that slight shrug of the shoulders and an expression that leaves little room for interpretation, hoping to be able to change it quickly with one of amazement.”
“I admit, the 2023 season still stings, but not for Ferrari, but for having seen drivers move or teams use races for testing rather than racing. So, I hope there won’t be a season like that again. Let’s start, therefore, with a hope that perhaps approaches certainty, namely that Red Bull won’t dominate as they did in 2023; after all, they won 21 out of 22, and repeating such a thing is impossible. So, that’s the goal… Take some races away from them, or better, let’s put it as having more contested races, in fact, it’s enough to say contested. If this translates into ‘being in the fight,’ whether it’s Carlos or others, we will only discover along the way, but hypothesizing it now with ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ is pure fantasy,” concluded Carlo Vanzini.