Scuderia Ferrari is confident that it will not suffer the pain of dropping down the grid due to using too many components in the power unit. Currently, both Maranello drivers Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen are on the cusp of being handed a penalty, as they are on their fourth Turbocharger, ahead of the 2017 Belgian Grand Prix, which is scheduled to take place on 27 August 2017 at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in Stavelot, Belgium.
For the 2017 Formula One championship, drivers are able to use four of every part of the power unit before penalties start being handed out and with nine events still left to run in the 2017 F1 season, Scuderia Ferrari Chief Technical Officer Mattia Binotto is hopeful that an effective rotation system will get the team to the end of the season without receiving any grid penalties:
“Certainly it is somehow a concern that we had failure on the turbo at the start of the season and we had to replace them at the very start. You introduce very early in the season turbo number three and turbo number four.” – Scuderia Ferrari Chief Technical Officer Mattia Binotto explained, as reported by Italian national sports newspaper based in Rome Corriere dello Sport.
“Having said that, we introduced as well in the following turbos some modifications for reliability, and they are running well at the moment. We’ve got all the pool at the moment that has been introduced, but we’ve got all the mileage available on each turbo, so we are rotating them. Obviously it is our objective to conclude the season with the current pool of turbos.” – Mattia Binotto concluded.
Ferrari’s technical boss also commented on the title battle between the Maranello team (four victories) and Mercedes (six victories), which has ebbed and flowed over the course of the season so far. Scuderia Ferrari trails Mercedes by 39 points, closing in with a 1-2 finish at the 2017 Hungarian Grand Prix: “I think that each race is different to the others. There have been races at the start of the season where we have been competitive and others where Mercedes has been competitive. If you look, for example, at Bahrain very early in the season, [Mercedes] have been very competitive in qualifying, we have been in the race. I don’t think that there is a clear tendency and a clear trend on the competitiveness of the two teams. Certainly the development is very important, and that has to be done race by race.”