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As the sun set on the final day of pre-season testing late on Sunday, the words on everyone’s lips were Mercedes and Red Bull.
“Everyone is saying that this Mercedes is fast. Consistently fast,” said respected Auto Motor und Sport correspondent Michael Schmidt. Red Bull’s Dr Helmut Marko added: “(It is fast) at least on one lap. But at least we do have to take them really seriously.”
Felipe Massa insists he is not worried about the apparently ever-greater influence wrought by his teammate Fernando Alonso at Ferrari.
Fernando Alonso was “undoubtedly” the best driver of the 2012 season, according to fellow Spaniard and Ferrari test driver Marc Gene.
“The ease with which Vettel has won his titles is abnormal,” the former Minardi driver is quoted by EFE news agency. “For me the best driver this year was undoubtedly Fernando, getting thirteen out of twenty podiums.”
HRT’s technical director Toni Cuquerella has acknowledged that the Spanish team’s F1 foray is now over.
It was believed the team’s departing owner Thesan Capital had set an end-of-November deadline for a new buyer to be found. Indeed, as November became December over the past weekend, the FIA published the official 2013 entry list, and it made no mention of HRT.
Ferrari is still pushing hard to give Fernando Alonso a title-winning Ferrari for the final back-to-back head-to-head with Sebastian Vettel.
With Red Bull and Vettel’s qualifying problems allowing Alonso to claw back 3 points in Abu Dhabi, the Spaniard is still 10 points adrift with just Austin and Brazil to go. And with the red F2012 still not a match for the Adrian Newey-penned RB8, Alonso said after finishing second in Abu Dhabi: “We need to keep working and in Maranello they work day and night to bring new parts.”
Ferrari has travelled to India with some improvements for its 2012 car, test driver Marc Gene has revealed.
Despite admitting its wind tunnel has not always been up to scratch this year, the Italian team remains determined to fight back after Fernando Alonso lost his long-standing championship lead to Red Bull’s on-form Sebastian Vettel two weeks ago in Korea.
Caso and Cioci win Trofeo Pirelli Basov on top in Coppa Shell
Today saw the Ferrari Racing Days come to an end at Silverstone circuit, the event dedicated to owners and fans of the marque, featuring on track action for all the main activities of the Maranello company’s Corse Clienti department. A crowd of over 25,000 watched historic Formula 1 cars lap the track in untimed sessions, as well as owners of the extreme sports cars aimed at track use, which make up the XX programmes.
Ferrari Racing Days at Silverstone
Although it has not yet been officially ratified as a Guinness World Record, there’s no doubt that today, a new world record was established for the biggest parade of Ferraris ever organised. 964 Ferraris took to the Silverstone circuit to beat the previous record of 490 cars dating back to 2008 at Japan’s Fuji Speedway Circuit.
McLaren is considering following Ferrari’s lead and introducing innovative pull-rod front suspension for its 2013 car.
That is the claim of the Spanish sports daily Marca, citing the information of multiple Italian specialist sources. Ferrari raised eyebrows early this year when the aggressive F2012 was launched with pull-rod suspension: a configuration not seen since Fernando Alonso raced a Minardi more than a decade ago.
More than 25 drivers with formula one experience will be on the grid at this weekend’s 80th running of the fabled 24 hour Le Mans race.
Near the front, in the premier LMP1 prototype class, will be Allan McNish and Marc Gene, driving for Audi. Scot McNish raced in F1 with Toyota in 2002, while Gene drove for Minardi and is still a Ferrari test driver. Toyota has since left F1 and for 2012 has entered Le Mans, and the Japanese marque’s number 8 entry is a grand prix-superteam featuring Anthony Davidson (Super Aguri), Sebastien Buemi (Toro Rosso) and one-off 1999 Minardi driver Stephane Sarrazin.
Ferrari does not have a leading car so far in 2012, but when it comes to pitstops, the famous Italian team is setting the pace.
That is the finding of the Spanish sports daily Marca, reporting that Fernando Alonso’s 2.4 second pitstop in Shanghai was the fastest of all. And the report said Ferrari’s pitstops were on average six tenths better than those performed by rival top teams Mercedes, McLaren and Red Bull in China.
Fernando Alonso said he is hoping the F2012 becomes “3 or 4 tenths” better at Barcelona.
Ferrari is looking ahead to Barcelona next month, as the famous Italian team plans to begin putting a difficult start to the 2012 season behind it. Test driver Marc Gene, who is travelling to the grands prix this year, said the F2012 was “born well” but fell behind the other leading teams as the winter pre-season progressed.
Ferrari has set to work to fix a problem at the rear of its troubled F2012 car, Italy’s Autosprint reports.
The report said initial winter testing highlighted problems with the car’s exhaust solution, prompting Pat Fry to order the outlets be moved inwards. This, however, left the homologated portion of the chassis that housed the original exhausts intact, with modification to require a new FIA crash test.
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