Scuderia Ferrari finished third in the 2021 Formula One season after a close battle with McLaren and now the Italian side it confident that the early development switch it made to its 2022 project will show the desired results next year by reducing the gap to Mercedes and Red Bull.
Having one of the most closely matched driver line-ups in Formula 1, Scuderia Ferrari knows that if its duo take points off each other then it could be a compromise if it finds itself in a tight championship battle next season. At the same time, Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto made it clear that Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc will begins the 2022 Formula One championship on an equal footing – and that it will be on circuit results which will eventually show if there will be the need for one driver to help the other in the second part of the season:
“In terms of drivers, as we have often said, I think it is the track that will dictate it. The priority is always the team, but no doubt, if they can compete for an important position in the championship, it will be the track that will tell who’s ahead. And sometimes, I think it’s not only about driver talent or driver capacity. A driver can be a lot unfortunate, and have damage, reliability issues, or crashes. So I don’t think that we need at this stage, and certainly we will not have a policy, of number one or number two. We will simply discuss it based on positions on track whenever it will be time.” – Mattia Binotto explained.
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Carlos Sainz proved a great signing for the Maranello team and impressive in his first year with Scuderia Ferrari, with a great second part of the championship that allowed him to finish ahead of teammate Charles Leclerc in the Formula 1 Constructor Standings.
Yet Mattia Binotto does not think there is any reason to feel that Charles Leclerc under-performed in 2021, as he feels the Monegasque driver was unlucky at times.
“For Charles, I have to say that I’m very happy to see the progress he has made this season. I think he’s has always been somehow very fast in qualifying, even in the last part of the season where maybe Carlos was challenging him a bit more. I think we should not forget that in the season, there are a couple of examples, which is Monaco and Budapest, where he didn’t score. I think he has been unlucky as a driver in those occasions. Without those, and it’s difficult to say where he would have finished, but maybe at least 40 points is missing from his classification. So without that, again, I think he would have been a lot further ahead in the championship. So that’s why again I can only judge very positively his season. He has learned, furthermore, how to manage the tyres, how to manage the race situations and the race pace. So I am quite pleased on the progress he has made.” – the Ferrari boss concluded.
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