The wait is almost over. The 2023 F1 world championship is getting closer and closer, as the teams will unveil the new single-seaters in February before putting them on the track for the official testing session at the Bahrain International Circuit.
The winter break, during which the teams worked for the 2023 Formula One season, has led to some changes among the team principals. First of all was the announcement of the resignation of Mattia Binotto with the consequent arrival of Frédéric Vasseur in the Ferrari team, which also opened the door to other changes.
The Maranello team, as has often happened, remains one of the most eagerly awaited on the track, especially after the performance shown last season. The successor of the F1-75 is thus called upon to fix those problems encountered in 2022, just as Fred Vasseur is expected to manage the team much better.
To win the title you need to be perfect. However, the Prancing Horse could face the 2023 championship with the classic question: Carlos Sainz or Charles Leclerc? A possible internal struggle that Ferrari does not need and which could therefore complicate things quite a bit.
2023 will be the third year that Carlos Sainz will spend at Ferrari. After a first season of adaptation, ended in any case in front of his teammate, and a second year of ups and downs, finished instead in fifth place, the time seems to have come for Carlos Sainz for the true test.
The Spanish driver showed that he has good driving skills combined with a leadership that not everyone is able to express. In some circumstances, Carlos Sainz’s positions, at a strategic level, have in fact allowed him to obtain better results than the Monegasque.
Show your support for Scuderia Ferrari with official merchandise collection! Click here to enter the F1 online Store and shop securely! And also get your F1 tickets for every race with VIP hospitality and unparalleled insider access. Click here for the best offers to support Charles and Carlos from the track!
The Iberian seems to be ready to take that further leap to fight among the greats. “The car will have to improve and I will have to improve too, especially at the beginning of the season. The perfect year is not impossible”. The words used by the Spanish driver seem to preview a series of difficult challenges; for himself first of all, but also for the entire team that shares that red suit with him. But is Carlos really ready to fight for a world title?
The last season faced with the F1-75 often saw the Spaniard in difficulty. Unfortunate episodes aside, the Iberian seems to have undergone a different pressure, aware of the fact that proving to be mentally strong can lead to that status of first driver that everyone dreams of.
An exercise which, however, has not always been successful for the Spanish driver. The results have often not been the best, showing Carlos Sainz as a capable driver but with the need for a more cautious approach. A scenario that perhaps a possible title contender cannot afford to choose.
A sport like F1 often requires confrontation with each other and, in particular, with one’s teammate, which is the first real test of every driver. The history of the sport is full of so-called “fratricidal struggles”, not always ending or being managed in the best possible way. Having the best car with two drivers capable of fighting for the title is in fact a situation that many team principals would prefer to avoid.
In recent years the battle that has seen a heavy clash is that of 2016 between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg; a fight that led the German to the title, to exhaustion and to the consequent retirement from Formula 1. In view of the 2023 championship, the “challenge” launched by Carlos Sainz does not therefore seem to be the best approach for Ferrari. In fact, managing this situation may not be what the Maranello team needs at this particular moment.
After a 2022 F1 campaign that started off on the right foot and ended with the risk of losing second place in both standings, Ferrari needs to set itself one goal at a time. And, perhaps, an internal struggle would become a difficult obstacle to overcome for a team that must first of all get back on the right track.
In fact, 2022 has highlighted a Ferrari flaw: being still immature in managing race weekend that should lead to a race win.
The arrival of Frederic Vasseur in place of Mattia Binotto could also represent another obstacle to overcome. Starting the year with a possible internal clash could mean pulling yourself out of the world championship battle alone. The approach that the new team principal will decide to adopt will still have to be delicate, almost invisible. Ferrari does not need an internal rift but a union that leads it to outperform the competition.
The drivers should not be considered exempt in pursuing the common goal. Both Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc have in fact made their mistakes; situations that with good teamwork cannot be repeated. Any fight thus needs to be postponed because, in all probability, it would only increase the difficulties that the Maranello team promised to solve.
If in 2022 Ferrari was not yet ready to win, in 2023 this mountain will have to be climbed. However, there is still a long way to go for a fight against its drivers and going in that direction may not be the right choice for Frederic Vasseur’s new Ferrari.