Ferrari launches 2023 car, aiming for F1 title

Ferrari has launched the car it hopes will end a 15-year title drought in Formula 1, the SF23.

The new car retains Ferrari’s famous red paintwork with additional black along the front of the frame and on the rear spoiler, where the team name is written in white lettering.

Ferrari debuted the SF23 in front of a makeshift stand at the Fiorano test track, which was attended by 500 fans as well as students from local schools and universities.

In a rare F1 car debut, drivers Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz then drove a few laps for fans in attendance and those watching the streams online.

The toss of a coin determines which rider will finish first in Fiorano’s laps, but Sainz was given a progress update via the team radio as Leclerc completed the car’s first lap.

“Everything is fine, mate,” Leclerc told Sainz.

Sainz replied, “You’re P1 now!”

“P1 darling!” to the answer from the cockpit.

Ferrari has not won a Formula 1 title since the constructors’ success in 2008 and has not won a driver’s championship since Kimi Raikkonen took the crown in 2007.

Leclerc hopes the new car can end the wait for Ferrari fans.

“The goal is obviously to win,” Leclerc said at the launch event. “Winning is what drives me and the team. I’m excited to get back in the car and try to win that championship.”

The SF23 heralds the start of a new era at Maranello after Fred Vasseur replaced Mattia Binotto as Ferrari team principal over the winter.

Binotto’s tenure came to an end after a disappointing title campaign in 2022 in which the team fell short of its early-season promise and ultimately ended with just four wins to the champions’ 17. Red Bull world.

The key ingredients for success appeared to be in place last year, but after a strong start to the season, Ferrari surrendered with a series of reliability problems, strategic blunders and human error. drive.

Reliability issues forced Ferrari to sacrifice engine performance in hopes of securing a race finish and fixing those problems was a major focus in the winter.

“I think everyone’s first priority is reliability because when you’re at this stage of the season and you don’t have reliability you can’t play for three days.” [testing] and then you’re starting to go in the wrong direction,” Vasseur said. “Based on the data from the dyno, we are all optimistic, but only Bahrain can tell us where we are in terms of reliability and efficiency. capacity. So far it’s been fine.”

However, the team also lost to Red Bull in auto development and missed several opportunities due to questionable strategy calls. Vasseur said he has reviewed last year’s strategic decisions since joining last month, but has no plans to replace key players on the wall before the first race.

“We’re going to make some small tweaks, but what you see is just the tip of the iceberg, and when you talk about strategy, it’s not just one person pushing the button, it’s the software, the team at home. machines and processes on the pit wall,” he said. “It’s a complete picture and not a person.”

Head of chassis development Enrico Cardile said many of the ideas of last year’s car have been carried over, but the design itself is completely new.

“Our 2023 car is an evolution of the car we raced last year, but in fact it has been completely redesigned,” he said. “Aerodynamically, we have increased the vertical downforce to further adapt to the new aerodynamic regulations and achieve the desired balance characteristics.

“The suspension has also been redesigned to aid aerodynamics and increase the range of adjustments that can be made to the car on the track. The most obvious changes are in the front suspension area, where they are. i switched to low rail.

“The front wing is different, so is the nose construction, while the bodywork is a more extreme version of what we saw last season.”

Ferrari has said that Leclerc and Sainz will be treated equally this year unless one emerges with a clear title.


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