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Vasseur: Ferrari F1 team mustn’t think Red Bull has a “magic bullet” to replicate

Ferrari Formula 1 boss Fred Vasseur says his team mustn’t make the mistake of believing that rivals Red Bull have a “magic bullet” that has to be emulated.

Sparks fly from the car of Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF-23

Ferrari finished the 2023 season in third place in the world championship, some 454 points behind Red Bull, who won all but one grand prix last season - with Carlos Sainz interrupting its streak in Singapore.

Vasseur stressed that the Maranello outfit has to improve in every area in order to chip away at the advantage that Red Bull has, rather than focus on replicating one major gain the world champion's may have.

“I think the mistake would be to imagine that Red Bull, they have a magic bullet of five-tenths or that we made a step on something,” he said.

“The performance is coming from everywhere into the company, on the fact that we are able to produce parts quicker, on the fact we have better reliability.

“We gave up too many points this season for different reasons, for reliability, for disqualification in Austin, for impeding in quali. This is clearly where we have to work.

Frederic Vasseur, Team Principal and General Manager, Scuderia Ferrari

Photo by: Ferrari

Frederic Vasseur, Team Principal and General Manager, Scuderia Ferrari

“And we have to improve on aero, on engine, on every single topic. It's not that we have something wrong and something good, and you fix something and you are making a step of four or five tenths.

“The most important thing is that the one thousand people we have in the team are convinced that they are all performance contributors, and they are all trying to push a little bit the limit, even if it's for one thousandth of a second, which are enough then to do a huge step.”

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Vasseur pointed out that the team improved the performance of the SF-23 in the latter part of the season by better understanding the car rather than by regularly bringing updates to the track.

“I'm more than pleased because between Zandvoort and [Abu Dhabi], we didn't change massively the car,” he said.

“We had an upgrade in Japan I think, but basically we kept the same car, and we were able to do a much better job with a better understanding of the car, better set-up of the car and a better approach from the drivers.

“It means that we have room for improvement everywhere, and this feeling is a good one to develop something for next year.”

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