Red Bull's VSC plan shows Ferrari's strategy call not wrong in Italian GP

Red Bull has revealed that it would have stopped Max Verstappen during the early VSC period at Formula 1’s Italian Grand Prix if then leader Charles Leclerc had not pitted.

Red Bull's VSC plan shows Ferrari's strategy call not wrong in Italian GP

Sebastian Vettel’s stranded Aston Martin triggered a VSC on lap 11 at Monza, and Ferrari used the opportunity to pit Leclerc for fresh rubber.

That move, so early in the race, moved the Monegasque on to a two-stop strategy and out of kilter with runaway leader Verstappen who was a one-stop.

But while some have questioned whether or not Ferrari made a blunder in making the stop then, rival Red Bull reckons it was a viable option at that point.

However, the ultimate deciding factor was that Ferrari never had the pace to run with the Red Bull, so whatever strategy it was on it was never going to help it triumph.

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said on Sunday night that his squad was ready to pit Verstappen if Leclerc had not stopped during the VSC – but it does not think strategy was the defining factor in the race.

“We understood why they did that,” he said. “I think we just had a faster car. I think strategically they made a fine call. I think we just had a quicker package today. So I think we would have won the race irrelevant to that.”

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari F1-75, George Russell, Mercedes W13, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB18

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari F1-75, George Russell, Mercedes W13, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB18

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto said his squad realised early on in the race it did not have the speed nor the tyre life to match Verstappen on the same strategy – so it needed to try something different.

Reflecting on the VSC call, Binotto said: “With hindsight we believe it was the right decision when the safety car came out at that time of the race.

“We knew that Charles had got a good pace, but Max got better tyre degradation and he was already faster for us. Staying on the simple same strategy of him, one stop, he would have beat us sooner or later.

“So the only chance for us was somehow to move the strategy. We have been a bit unlucky because the VSC ended while we were still in the pitlane, so not getting all the potential benefit of the VSC, but still I think Max overall was faster today and impossible to beat.”

Read Also:

Binotto said that when teams are battling a faster car, they have to try to do something different with strategy if they are to have a hope of coming out on top.

“It's not difficult to beat a faster car, it's impossible,” he said. “Normally you win if have the faster car and you may only get it wrong with strategies.

“Whatever has been the strategy [for Max] he would have won: that is the point. But by pitting and moving on the two-stop with Charles, it was not the wrong decision because you never know what may happen later in the race. You never know how the tyre degradation may be on Max on longer stints.

“If you look back at the car behind, for example, with George, the gap that Charles had at the end of the race on George was big and comfortable.

“So overall, it was not a risk, but let me say a gamble, that could have turned into a positive choice.”

shares
comments
The 10 best Formula 1 drivers ever: Hamilton, Schumacher & more
Previous article

The 10 best Formula 1 drivers ever: Hamilton, Schumacher & more

Next article

Why Verstappen would have beaten Leclerc without safety car help

Why Verstappen would have beaten Leclerc without safety car help
Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie? Plus

Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie?

The Australian rising star is fast, consistent, confident, adaptable and has shown excellent racecraft, but there’s already a taint to his reputation. That hasn’t stopped him becoming the hottest property in this year’s F1 driver market and why McLaren moved fast to snap up the 21-year-old

The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver Plus

The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver

Formula 1's incoming engine rules shake-up has multiple targets. But it may also solve what has been a bone of contention since the hybrids arrived in 2014. The new plan will allow the series to pump up the volume

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance Plus

How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance

Nyck de Vries appeared to have missed his opportunity to break into Formula 1 as he was passed over for more exciting talents who have now become frontrunners and title fighters. But after catching the eye outside of the F1 sphere, before his stunning impromptu grand prix debut in Italy, will it lead to a delayed full-time race seat?

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment? Plus

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment?

The Singapore Grand Prix has, explains BEN EDWARDS, played an important role in Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career. As the series returns to the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in three years, he faces the latest challenge with an underperforming Mercedes car

Formula 1
Sep 28, 2022
Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals Plus

Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals

Although Ferrari's chances of title glory in 2022 have evaporated, chairman John Elkann expects the team to have chalked up both championships by 2026. Both require drivers to play the team game and, having now become more comfortable with the F1-75, Carlos Sainz may be Ferrari's key to title glory

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2022
How F1 has tried to avoid repeating its 2014 engine rules mistakes Plus

How F1 has tried to avoid repeating its 2014 engine rules mistakes

With Formula 1’s future engine regulations now agreed, MARK GALLAGHER wonders if they will provide a more competitive field than past attempts actually managed

Formula 1
Sep 26, 2022
How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era Plus

How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era

STUART CODLING charts the development of the Williams FW09, the ugly duckling that heralded the start of the title-winning Williams-Honda partnership

Formula 1
Sep 25, 2022
The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared Plus

The Moss-Ferrari farce that current F1 drivers are thankfully spared

Recent moves within the driver market have reminded MAURICE HAMILTON of a time when contracts weren’t worth the paper they weren’t written on…

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2022