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Binotto: Engine modes behind Ferrari's early pace advantage

  • Published on 30 Mar 2019 09:55
  • comments 0
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto says the use of different engine modes was behind Ferrari's pace advantage on Friday.

The Scuderia outfit was one second clear of Mercedes after the opening practice session, and although the gap fell in the evening session, it still boasted a lead of six-tenths of a second.

Its pace encouraged some, as two weeks ago in Melbourne, Ferrari struggled throughout the weekend to keep up with Mercedes, who secured a one-two finish in both qualifying and the race.

Binotto explained that trialling engine modes made the team appear fast, but he expects the rest of the weekend to be a tough fight. 

"We focused on ourselves, on our programmes, on the dedications we made after Australia, trying to react and address the issues we had,” Binotto said. “I think the delta you see here is not too significant.

“I think tomorrow it will be certainly a tough battle. The others will be very strong tomorrow. It’s quite obvious, you may see the GPS data, the speed on the straights, we were certainly pushing different engine modes compared to what the others were pushing.

“We’re expecting a tough battle tomorrow, but I think more important is staying focused on ourselves, we improved our situation after Australia.

“This one is quite a different track. Let’s say we didn’t have today the problem we suffered in Australia, thanks to the track and thanks to the modification we made."

Binotto didn't offer insight into what was at the root of its problems in Australia but denied that cooling problems made it slow during the weekend.

“I will not go into details on what happened, that’s our matter,” he said.

“I saw a lot of speculation on the newspapers and internet. What I read is not fully true. We did not have issues of cooling, I may tell you that.

“At the end of Australia, it has been a sum of many factors, from the power unit to the set-up to tyre management. And I think it’s only the sum of what we have seen in Australia.”


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Date
Grand Prix
Circuit
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Spain
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Spain
15 - Mar 17
Australia
29 - Mar 31
Bahrain
-
Bahrain
12 - Apr 14
China
26 - Apr 28
Azerbaijan
10 - May 12
Spain
-
Spain
23 - May 26
Monaco
7 - Jun 9
Canada
21 - Jun 23
France
28 - Jun 30
Austria
12 - Jul 14
United Kingdom
26 - Jul 28
Germany
2 - Aug 4
Hungary
30 - Sep 1
Belgium
6 - Sep 8
Italy
20 - Sep 22
Singapore
27 - Sep 29
Russian
11 - Oct 13
Japan
25 - Oct 27
Mexico
1 - Nov 3
United States of America
15 - Nov 17
Brazil
29 - Dec 1
United Arab Emirates
See full schedule

Formula 1 Calendar - 2019

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
15 - Mar 17
Australia Albert Park
29 - Mar 31
12 - Apr 14
26 - Apr 28
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
10 - May 12
23 - May 26
Monaco Monte Carlo
7 - Jun 9
21 - Jun 23
France Paul Ricard
28 - Jun 30
Austria Red Bull Ring
12 - Jul 14
United Kingdom Silverstone
26 - Jul 28
Germany Hockenheimring
2 - Aug 4
Hungary Hungaroring
30 - Sep 1
6 - Sep 8
Italy Monza
20 - Sep 22
27 - Sep 29
Russian Sochi Autodrom
11 - Oct 13
25 - Oct 27
1 - Nov 3
United States of America Circuit of the Americas
15 - Nov 17
Brazil Interlagos
29 - Dec 1
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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