3 - GP GIAPPONE F1/2022 - SABATO 08/10/2022 credit: @Scuderia Ferrari Press Office

Red Mist: Ferrari finding power to bring glory

3 - GP GIAPPONE F1/2022 - SABATO 08/10/2022 credit: @Scuderia Ferrari Press Office

There’s a tangible wind of change at Ferrari. Let’s hope it blows a far better 2023 our way.

Two months ago, Red Mist made a few wishes for Ferrari. Happily, some of the greater ones have come true, others not. Overall, however, there’s been a certain shift in the right direction.

Back then, just as F1 emerged from its pre-Spa hiatus, we made five wishes. The first was Reason for Rueda, that chief strategist Iñaki be blessed with the rationale to act quickly. To make the right decisions.

Seems someone was listening. That awful stigma of strategic Ferrari stuff-ups has all but disappeared.

Drivers blessed with calm, consistency

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We also wished for Consistency for Carlos, Calm for Charles; the only thing inconsistent about Sainz since then, is his wretched luck.

Aside from a lacklustre Holland, Junior has impressed. But his luck just vanished once we started flying away. Charles on the other hand, appears to have taken our advice. He’s chilled. Less yelling, more composure and five podiums on the trot. All good.

Number 4 is the wish Red Mist is proudest of. Did Mattia Binotto read that column, or our other pleas for him to keep quiet, to speak sense, or refrain from commenting? Well, if he did or not, Mattia has done just that. He’s kept quiet and spoken much more sense when he did. Best of all, he’s generally just refrained from commenting.

We’re all far better for that. Sporting director Laurent Mekies is doing most of the Ferrari talking these days. His messages are rational, his comments so much more measured than any Ferrari communication earlier in the year.

A better world according to Laurent Mekies

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“Charles was brilliant to come through the field, so very well done to him, to the team,” Mekies pondered after Austin. “He fought very hard, but probably we still are a little bit down compared to Max in race conditions. Definitely Charles gave it a good go.”

“It was a bit of a shock to lose Carlos like that after a few hundred metres. It is quite rare to see this happen and part of the game, but it is a shame. We were all close on pace, so it would’ve been great to be in the fight also with Carlos.”

Moving on, Mekies alluded to Red Bull’s astounding pace, he said: “It is not the first race where they had a speed advantage. The bottom line is they had a pace advantage, as they did for most Sundays this year. They have good protection from our attack with their top speed.”

Ferrari no longer needs to be told what to do

ferrari sainz pitstop dutch gp ferrari fumble mistake f1

All of this shows that Ferrari no longer needs to be told what it should be doing. Maybe it heeded some of our advice, but the team clearly understands the three major pieces that now need most attention.

One is power. No secret about that. Another is reliability. That Leclerc ended third on Sunday at least shows that Maranello is better managing that shortcoming; and the third is Sunday, or more how the Ferrari seems to fall off the tyre cliff so much quicker than the Red Bull does.

Most importantly, the team has either addressed, or it is addressing its issues at hand. This new rhetoric suggests that Ferrari is actively dealing with its remaining shortcomings, and that this action will positively affect the outcome of our 2023 Formula 1 machine.

Yes, it’s been a hard season. We’ve won. We may even win again, but we are behind, so the focus is now on 2023 and judging by what we’ve seen in the past two months, Maranello’s omens look good. Let’s just hope that they prove so, come the new season and that Ferrari finds to power to bring that glory.