The step forward seen last year with Ferrari has been further nurtured this season as the Italian manufacturer leads both the championships after 10 Formula 1 races in 2018.
Ferrari started 2017 on a good note but mistakes coupled with certain failures meant they felt short against their German rivals again. But the 2018 season has been a different ballgame with the Italian manufacturer on point so far.
There has been less mistakes committed from Ferrari, which has put Mercedes in some pressure already. Even though it is neck and neck at this stage, but Ferrari has an upperhand in both the championships.
In fact, the performance has risen for them as they not only have managed to perform better but also win on their bogey tracks, especially Silverstone which is highly regarded as Mercedes go-to circuit.
The team’s engine performed better than ever during the weekend with even the customer teams Haas and Sauber consistently inside the Top 10 beating their rivals using the Mercedes and or Renault or Honda units.
But Ferrari’s Chief Technical Officer Mattia Bonitto reckons it is the full package which is delivering and not just the engine performing better than the other two departments. “I would say honestly, it is the full package.
“I would not split the engine, aero or chassis – when the car is fast, [it is] the full package [which] is working well together and I think that’s what happened [in British GP]. Obviously, we are happy for it [the victory].
“[But] we know it is still a very tight battle [and] the balance is very close. We have been very strong here [in Silverstone] as well, so we are happy with what we deliver,” he explained.
“We are happy [that] when [we are] bringing some new package [on the car, it is] working properly.” Team principal Maurizio Arrivabene was equally thrilled with the performances of the drivers and also the whole team on the circuit as well as Maranello.
“I am happy first of all for the team, starting from Mattia together with the other guys in Maranello, he put on the ground a very-very good car and the credit goes to him with Sebastian driving a like a lion to say with the pain he got in the neck,” he said.
It was Vettel’s first victory in Silverstone since the 2009 season and his first podium since 2015 – the circuit hasn’t been a happy ground for him as in the 11 times he has raced at Silverstone, he has only scored two wins and the three podiums.
“This weekend was a bit different [at Silverstone], it was very warm which is a bit unlikely for here, compared to recent years,” he said. “Also there was less wind, new asphalt, so a couple of new things but I think the main thing is that we were competitive, which we weren’t in the past.
“It’s a tricky circuit, you need to get the balance right, of downforce and drag. I think we have a very good car, we brought some bits, they seemed to work, so, I think we were very, very happy with the result. It’s been a difficult track for us. This year I think we were a match. Probably there were still some weaknesses in the race at different phases.
“As I described, I think the end of the first stint, I think Valtteri was a bit faster to overall I think we had pace in hand, managed the second stint and managed the race well. If you have a car that is fast, I think you can make things happen, and that’s what we did.”