According to Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko, Scuderia Ferrari would have “squeezed their engines to achieve maximum performance in the Italian Grand Prix and please the fans,” but this statement has now been denied by the Maranello team.
It seems more likely that the Scuderia experimented with a new hybrid configuration. This configuration allows for a more efficient energy delivery over the course of a lap, and combined with the low-downforce rear wing, it provided great straight-line speed, even surpassing that of the Red Bull.
Thanks to these changes, Carlos Sainz managed to secure pole position (the second consecutive pole at Monza for the Scuderia, following Charles Leclerc’s last year), as well as his first podium of the season.
Ferrari promptly refuted Helmut Marko’s statements. Jock Clear, Performance Engineer, stated, “I don’t think there was any alarm.”
“We were very happy to be ahead of Verstappen in qualifying; unfortunately, in the race, they still had more than us, but we knew that. They probably didn’t bring a specific wing for Monza, and this gave us a slight advantage without pushing the engine beyond its limits,” he concluded.
Now, the Maranello team is focusing on the Singapore weekend, aware that, with the new directive in effect, Red Bull could be closer than ever.