In both this season and last season Ferrari tailed off performance-wise just after the summer break. Is this more to do with Mercedes upping its game or Ferrari reaching the full potential of its design concept?
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I don't believe Ferrari has reached the limit of its design concept or its development, and we've seen more new parts appearing on the car. But clearly something has happened over the past few races.
Reading between the lines, we've had all this stuff about the twin battery supposedly enabling Ferrari to get more power from the engine. Previously I've said I didn't believe that was happening, but we've now seen such a swing in Ferrari's performance since the FIA was prompted to start monitoring its energy deployment that you have to start questioning this.
Yes, Mercedes has made its car better: it has reduced the blistering problems we saw in Belgium and it's stronger off the slow corners. But in the past three races - in Singapore, Russia and Japan - Mercedes has been way ahead on pace. Ferrari is now 0.6% behind, having dominated the preceding three races (Hungary, Belgium and Italy) on pace and been about 0.1% ahead. So that's a 0.7% swing.