Saturday, October 6, 2012

Ferrari admits wind tunnel data could affect Alonso's performance

Stefano Domenicali/ Federation Internationale De L'Automobile  

Stefano Domenicali, Ferrari team principal, admitted Friday that flawed data from the team’s wind tunnel has affected Fernando Alonso’s bid for the Driver’s Championship. Alonso currently leads with 194 points but is being chased closely by Sebastian Vettel with 165 pts and the dark horses, Kimi Raikkonen and Lewis Hamilton with 149 and 142, respectively.

Domenicali explained, “In the second part of the season, when we were trying to bring new updates on the car, not all the updates were working on the track...So, we started to investigate and we found (an) issue coming from a tool that is… not obsolete, but not really up to the speed of the new technologies available on the market.”

Such an admission must be difficult for Ferrari, whose name has been synonymous with F1 success in both Driver and Constructor Championships. Using Toyota’s wind tunnel in Cologne to try to compensate for incomplete or flawed data shows just how desperate the Italian team is this season. Domenicali indicated the team plans to rectify the situation next season, but that won’t be in time to keep Fernando Alonso atop the Drivers’ Championship standings.

With the reigning champion Vettel having scored his second win of the season at Singapore, Ferrari will have to dig deep to compensate.

“The plan is to try to push as much as we can, bring new developments every race but it isn’t easy,” Domenicali stated. “I think the situation in the championship is very clear: if you are not able to improve the car then it is more difficult to fight for the championship because we cannot rely on the problem of the others.”

“We need to make sure that at least we win a race and then we will see what will be the situation with the others.”

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