Ferrari admit frustration with lack of early performance in F2012

Pat Fry with Nikolas Tombazis at Jerez

Pat Fry with Nikolas Tombazis at Jerez

Feb.9 (PVM) With three days of testing at Jerez completed, Ferrari technical director Pat Fry has admitted that the team’s F2012 has been problematic since it was fired up in anger for the first time this week and admits that he is not happy at where they stand in relation to their rivals.

Fernando Alonso got his first taste of the Ferrari F2012 at Jerez

Fernando Alonso got his first taste of the Ferrari F2012 at Jerez

Speaking to media in the Jerez paddock Fry said, “I’m not happy with where we are at the moment. I think there is a lot of room for us to improve from where we are. Reliability wise it is good. Performance-wise I think we’re okay, but we can play around with the performance and improve some corners and some particular parts of the corner, but I wouldn’t say I am happy yet until we get the whole thing working.”

“Certainly the three tests rather than four does compress things a little bit. I think we have a lot of work to do.”

“The basic platform is okay. We’re looking at the various characteristics and all the bits we have to test. We can play around with the through corner characteristics, so we can do different things at corner entry, mid corner to exit, and it is really trying to find the right balance of those things.”

“We’re working through a reasonably large matrix here, so on each run we are trying almost a different configuration. There is a lot of analysis here and then back at the factory. We are using the simulation and the simulator to make sure everything ties in, so we can put the right package together.”

Fernando Alonso got his first taste of the Ferrari F2012 at Jerez

Fernando in the cockpit of the Ferrari F2012

“I think everything is a lot more compressed, so there is a lot of pressure on everyone. You have to try and make decisions quickly. We have a one week break coming up, but then it is two solid weeks and then you are packing the freight for Melbourne. So there is a lot of work for everyone to do. It is the same for every team up the pit lane.”

“We are not concentrating on taking the fuel out and trying to set a laptime. With only 12 days of testing before the next race, we have to make the most of all the time we have got.

“We were set back a little bit by the foot of snow in Fiorano, certainly the first morning of Felipe [Massa] was spent doing what we would have done there, so we are now trying to play catch up. Right now, it is about trying to get the right package together.”

“The front suspension is not that a big a deal to be honest. It is a small aero benefit, a small centre of gravity benefit, and I know it is different from what people have done in the past – but it is not that big a risk to be honest.

Fernando Alonso got his first taste of the Ferrari F2012 at Jerez

Fernando sat around waiting for 90 minutes as the team sorted out a problem on the day of his first run in the F2012

“With a sensible structure to come you sort it out. We have gone for every last little bit of performance. That was a small benefit and it cost us a small amount of weight, but the weight is low down and in the end it was the right thing to do.”

“The first two days we did not really have any reliability issues as such. Today there was a small hydraulic issue. We will get some new bits this evening which hopefully will see that one put to bed.

“That side of it, I think – the car, reliability wise, seems quite good as normal. Performance wise, it is literally trying to get the right bits together so a lot of analysis is needed.”

“We are all working very hard…”

Alonso will be in the cockpit of the F2012 for the final day of testing at Jerez on Friday, the team air-freighting parts from Maranello to avoid a repeat of the problems that cost them 90 minutes of track time on Wednesday.