Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto accepts the scale of the task remains unknown as he concedes its Formula 1 car is “losing a lot in each corner” to main rivals Mercedes leaving him searching for answers.
After ending pre-season testing at Circuit de Catalunya as strong favourites, Ferrari has endured a nightmare start to the 2019 F1 campaign which continued at the same circuit for the Spanish Grand Prix with both Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc off the pace and off the podium in fourth and fifth respectively.
While Mercedes dominated to a historic fifth consecutive 1-2 at the start of this season, Ferrari were left in the shadows with an F1 car struggling to replicate its pre-season pace despite both aerodynamic and engine upgrades for this weekend.
Pinpointing the area of weakness, Binotto says the Ferrari’s cornering is suffering with understeer while the problem is thought to be focused on getting the 2019 Pirelli tyres in the best operating window – a similar problem the Ferrari-powered Haas squad has struggled with so far this season.
Ferrari is running two cars at the second in-season test with the second F1 car devoted to Pirelli tyre testing as part of the tyre manufacturers’ own development programme.