‘Ferrari are the absolute disappointment of the start of the season’

Michelle Foster
Charles Leclerc climbs out of his beached Ferrari. Australia April 2023

Charles Leclerc climbs out of his beached Ferrari having gone off at Turn 3 on the opening lap. Australia April 2023

Former F1 driver Timo Glock has declared Ferrari an “absolute disappointment” with the Scuderia failing to live up to pre-season hype.

Much has been said about Ferrari’s 2022 season, a campaign in which they were blighted by reliability issues that forced them to turn down their engines as well as strategy blunders.

Ferrari insisted in the off-season they’d resolved those issues, reports claiming the power unit was up by 30bhp, while the company’s CEO Benedetto Vigna proclaimed that in the new SF-23, Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz would have a car that is “unprecedented in terms of speed”.

Not only is the SF-23 not that but Red Bull have designed a car that is. The RB19 is in a league of its own, scoring 123 points to lead the Constructors’ Championship with Red Bull 1-2 in the Drivers’.

As for Ferrari, they have just 26 points with the Scuderia yet to reach the podium while Leclerc already has two DNFs to his name. Sainz also failed to score in Australia, the Spaniard hit by a late-race penalty for tagging Fernando Alonso on a restart.

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“For me,” Glock wrote in his post-Australian Grand Prix column for Sky Deutschland, “Ferrari are the absolute disappointment of the start of the season. In terms of pace, nothing has come together for them.

“Charles Leclerc showed that after a bad qualifying session, there is a high risk of being involved in an accident.

“Carlos Sainz had good pace in the meantime and showed strong overtaking manoeuvres. The penalty at the end was unfortunate but justified.

“It was definitely not the start to the season that Ferrari was hoping for and that we were hoping for. Now it’s up to Frederic Vasseur to quickly set a new direction and get the team back on track.”

But while Ferrari develop their SF-23, hoping to not only find some speed but also cut out its tyre-eating tendencies, Red Bull will also be upgrading their RB19.

Glock fears Red Bull will continue to run rampant over their rivals in the coming races, the German saying Mercedes’ pace in Melbourne may have been track dependent and not a sign of a recovery.

“Is there any hope that the next races will be more exciting?” Glock questioned.

“In my opinion, the fact that the field moved closer together in Melbourne was due to the track characteristics. I was hoping that Mercedes in particular would have come closer. You have to see if they can keep the pace constant.

“In Baku there are more corners, long straights where Red Bull’s DRS effect comes into play. That’s why I believe that Red Bull will again tear a bigger gap between themselves and the competition in Baku.

“The question is: Who will bring the first updates and how will they turn out?”