While some people may say Max Verstappen dominating Formula 1 harms the series, Ferrari boss Fred Vasseur is not one of them.
Red Bull have firmly established themselves at the head of the Formula 1 grid in 2023, their charge spearheaded by Verstappen who has won the last eight grands prix in succession, his tally for the season so far standing at 10 wins overall.
And with his Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez chipping in with two more, it means Red Bull have accounted for all 12 victories up for grabs so far.
Fred Vasseur claims Max Verstappen dominance does not ‘hurt’ F1
Vasseur’s Ferrari team finds themselves in the pack also involving Mercedes, McLaren and Aston Martin who are being forced to fight amongst themselves for that ‘best of the rest’ tag.
Ferrari, alongside Mercedes, do have the distinction of being the only teams to deny Red Bull a pole position in F1 2023, but the Red Bull RB19 is proving simply too mighty to stop in race conditions.
That being said, Vasseur does not go along with the growing narrative that this domination from one team and driver has a damaging impact on Formula 1.
Asked by Autosprint how much it “hurts” F1 to have one driver who is untouchable for the rest, Vasseur replied: “I don’t agree with you. I think the others collectively have to do a better job.
“Verstappen is not hurting anything, he is just doing a fantastic job, better than the others, with his team. We just need to be spurred on to do a better job. We can’t complain about the Dutchman’s dominance.”
Ferrari’s campaign so far, as Vasseur himself admitted, has been an inconsistent one, but after challenging weekends at Silverstone and the Hungaroring, Ferrari rebounded with a podium finish at Spa-Francorchamps courtesy of Charles Leclerc.
Vasseur was pleased to see the SF-23 competitive there in a range of scenarios, but said the focus is to understand why this is not the case at all tracks they visit.
Asked how much of Ferrari’s strong showing at Spa can be attributed to the circuit type versus actual improvements, Vasseur replied: “Good question, both things have their importance.
“I am happy because we had a competitive weekend in different conditions, in the wet, in the dry, in the long runs, with the different types of tyres. We were always competitive and that pleases me.
“However, we need to understand why we perform better on some tracks and not so well on others. I think the other teams are in the same situation, we are all a bit inconsistent. It takes very little, with so many cars within two tenths, to go from second to fifth force!
“It’s too early to draw conclusions, but I think it will be like that until the end of the season. We have to understand why we are weaker in certain situations and try to remedy it.”
Ferrari sit P4 in the current Constructors’ standings, 88 points ahead of McLaren and just five behind Aston Martin a place up the road.