Work to do at Ferrari

By on Friday, September 21, 2012

Photo credit: Ferrari S.p.A.

Fernando Alonso has said that the Ferrari F2012 doesn't appear to be as competitive as at the Italian Grand Prix, but stressed that tyre degradation on Sunday will be key.

Alonso was fourth in the opening practice session but moved up to third later on.

"Overall, I would say today was positive, even if the first impression is that we are not as competitive as we were in Monza, two weeks ago. We still lack a bit of performance on tracks like this one, where you need maximum aerodynamic downforce", he said.

Alonso added that Ferrari tested several new parts with a varying degree of success.

"We tried various new components on the car: some seem to be positive, others less so, but maybe in the case of the latter, we need to spend a bit more time for them to be developed as well as possible."

Like so often in 2012, Alonso reckons managing the Pirelli tyres will be key to obtaining a good race result.

"There’s a significant difference between the two types of tyre, but we will have to wait until tomorrow to get a clear picture of the situation on this front. Maybe today’s difference has been somewhat exaggerated by the evolution of the track surface", he said.

"Testing the tyres over a long distance is very complicated on a track like this, because of the traffic, therefore it’s difficult to make a direct comparison to our main competitors. I am reasonably sure that, on Sunday, we will see rather significant degradation and it will be important to manage that as well as possible."

Felipe Massa scraped into the top ten in second practice and fired a warning to his team that work must be done.

"It wasn’t an easy day for me. The car wasn’t right all day and I also suffered particularly badly with tyre degradation in both sessions", said the Brazilian.

"At the end of the second session, we found something that wasn’t working properly, but that doesn’t explain all my problems. We must find out what happened so we can fix it for the rest of the weekend. We have reasonably clear ideas about the direction to go in when it comes to set-up: one thing’s certain, there’s a lot of work to do."

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