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Formula 1 Spanish GP

Ferrari poised for Red Bull-style F1 sidepod switch

Ferrari is set to shift its Formula 1 sidepod design towards Red Bull's concept as part of its upgrade package for this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix.

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF-23

The Italian outfit is bidding to turn around a disappointing start to the campaign where it has especially struggled with the race pace of its new SF-23.

But as it gets ready to introduce a raft of updates for this weekend's race at Barcelona, sources have revealed that one key area of change will be in its sidepod concept.

The team has made good use of an inwash solution since the launch of the ground-effect cars in 2022, and continued to pursue it for this season despite most of the grid adopting the Red Bull downwash style.

However, having seen Red Bull's clear advantage this season, the squad now appears ready to change its philosophy as part of a push to get answers to its problems.

While the new sidepods may not appear to be a direct copy of the Red Bull version, it is understood that they will mark a notable change of direction from what Ferrari has run up until now.

Ferrari SF-23 bodywork detail

Ferrari SF-23 bodywork detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The change may suggest that the team has concluded that the tyre issues it is suffering in races are more related to the aerodynamic aspects of the car than any mechanical setup issue.

While the car may look different, Charles Leclerc played down suggestions of a dramatic change in fortunes, although he hoped the tweaks would help deliver the consistency that Ferrari has been lacking.

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"We are not expecting any big miracles, to be honest," said Leclerc in Spain on Thursday. "From now on, we want to try and bring some small upgrades every race. This one should go in the right direction. But I don't think it will be a massive change."

What Leclerc hoped though was that the upgrades would dial out the peakiness that has impacted both him and Carlos Sainz so far this year.

"At the moment, the thing is that we have extremely peaky car that in qualifying, on the one lap pace with new tyres, and with the wind that we know exactly how we need to drive the car, it's okay," he explained.

"But as soon as we go a little bit out of those conditions, the car loses so much downforce overall. So, we have been working a lot on that with this new car.

"This should help us to not gain that much performance, but to at least be a bit more consistent throughout the weekend. That hopefully will help us to have a better result on the Sunday."

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