Ferrari: F1 team orders idea discussed more outside than internally

Ferrari says the use of team orders between Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz is “more discussed outside Ferrari than inside Ferrari” as it targets parity with its Formula 1 drivers.

Ferrari: F1 team orders idea discussed more outside than internally

After surging into an early lead in both championships under F1's new regulations for 2022, Ferrari has seen its hopes fade after falling behind Max Verstappen and Red Bull in the standings.

Leclerc sits 80 points behind Verstappen in the drivers’ championship ahead of the final nine races, having lost ground with retirements in Spain and Azerbaijan, as well as spinning out while leading in France. Ferrari is 97 points adrift of Red Bull at the top of the constructors’ standings.

PLUS: Why few could blame Leclerc for following the example of Hamilton’s exit bombshell

Ferrari has been asked regularly this year whether it would look to prioritise Leclerc and use Sainz to assist the Monegasque’s title hopes, only for the team to always stress it was too early to make such considerations

Asked by Autosport about Ferrari’s approach to team orders this year, sporting director Laurent Mekies felt more was being made of the issue externally than it is at Maranello.

“You're right in saying that it is more discussed outside Ferrari than inside Ferrari,” said Mekies.

“But more seriously, we have always been very clear. We target to have the best result for the team. Ferrari comes first.

“Then of course there will be a point where we will need to focus more on a driver compared to the other one if the championship position is requiring.

“So, it does not mean waiting for the mathematical difference, but it means being at the point of the season where you think it is the right thing to do so.”

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari F1-75, Carlos Sainz, Ferrari F1-75

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari F1-75, Carlos Sainz, Ferrari F1-75

Photo by: Ferrari

Sainz managed to score his maiden F1 victory at the British Grand Prix in July, passing Leclerc after a safety car restart when Ferrari split strategies and opted to pit Sainz for fresh tyres.

The team faced criticism for its strategy calls in Hungary after squandering Leclerc’s lead halfway through the race by fitting him with hard tyres, causing him to slip all the way back to sixth place.

PLUS: The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships

Ferrari had defended its strategy just one race earlier in France, when it had to pit Sainz in the closing stages to serve a penalty and take a fresh set of tyres when radio messages suggested there was confusion on the pit wall. 

Mekies said the delay in broadcasting the radio messages to Sainz at Paul Ricard was a good example of “how different situations can be seen inside and outside teams,” and that the perceived confusion was “simply the result of the radio message being broadcast 30 or 40 seconds after what had really happened”.

“If you had to go back there, you will call Carlos back exactly as we did and do the pit stop exactly as we did, so it just shows how difficult nowadays, in a complex sport, it is to understand the reasons behind a strategy or another,” Mekies said.

“That being said, we've lost quite a few points this year. We have reliability issues, we have a few things that we need to be better at. And yes, we are working extremely hard on it.

“It does not increase the pressure, because the pressure is maximum all the time because it's a competitive world, and that's the way we like it anyway.

“But it's a positive pressure, it's what pushes us to improve race after race.”

shares
comments

Related video

Aston Martin: CFD data shows rear wing doesn't hurt F1 rules intent
Previous article

Aston Martin: CFD data shows rear wing doesn't hurt F1 rules intent

Next article

The under-fire F1 driver fighting for his future

The under-fire F1 driver fighting for his future
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Plus

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Plus

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022
The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success Plus

The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success

OPINION: Charles Leclerc achieved his target of sealing runner-up in the 2022 world championship with a masterful drive behind Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi. And that race contained key elements that may help him, and Ferrari, go one better in Formula 1 2023

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022
How Verstappen's record-breaking 2022 season compares to the F1 greats Plus

How Verstappen's record-breaking 2022 season compares to the F1 greats

The 2022 Formula 1 season will be remembered as a record book rewriting Max Verstappen masterclass, a completely different challenge to his maiden world championship last year, and a clear sign he is still raising his own level. But where does it stack up against the all-time great F1 campaigns?

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022
Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2022 Formula 1 season came to a close at the Yas Marina Circuit, where the battle for second in the standings was decided, the wins in a season record extended and a retiring four-time world champion bowed out on a high. Here's how we rated the drivers

Formula 1
Nov 21, 2022
The factors that stopped Perez catching Leclerc in Verstappen's Abu Dhabi triumph Plus

The factors that stopped Perez catching Leclerc in Verstappen's Abu Dhabi triumph

Max Verstappen ended the 2022 Formula 1 season in fitting fashion with a dominant drive to victory in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. But behind him, early season rival Charles Leclerc achieved his target of securing the runner-up spot with a well-executed a one-stop strategy to beat Sergio Perez, whose pursuit on a two-stop strategy was hampered by several critical factors

Formula 1
Nov 21, 2022
Why the impact of FIA’s anti-bouncing metric is hard to judge Plus

Why the impact of FIA’s anti-bouncing metric is hard to judge

Faced with drivers complaining about the long-term health effects of car ‘bouncing’, the FIA stepped in to deal with it. JAKE BOXALL-LEGGE explains how the so-called ‘Aerodynamic Oscillation Metric’ works, and asks if it is fit for purpose?

Formula 1
Nov 20, 2022
Where Vettel stands in the list of the greatest F1 drivers Plus

Where Vettel stands in the list of the greatest F1 drivers

As Sebastian Vettel’s Formula 1 career has come to a close, figuring out where he fits into the greatest of all time order is a tough and subjective call. With the aid of statistics, attributes and history, here’s how the four-time world champion stacks up in the debate

Formula 1
Nov 19, 2022