Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has confirmed he won’t be with the team at the upcoming Bahrain Grand Prix.
The Ferrari boss remained at the team’s Maranello base for the Turkish Grand Prix, though he did have the ability to talk to the drivers over team radio, which he did after the race when Charles Leclerc was venting over an error that saw him drop from P2 to P4 on the final lap.
Reports had emerged that Binotto again wouldn’t be with the Scuderia in Bahrain, round 15 of 17 in the 2020 season, and now Binotto himself has confirmed the news.
“I am happy that I do not need to be at the circuit. My role is to be present in difficult times,” he said in an interview with Sky Sports, as quoted by Motorsport.com.
“I knew the car was better and these results are welcome and I will not be at the next GP [in Bahrain]. Our drivers will do well. Our car has improved and they are more comfortable behind the wheel.
“Overall, we showed we have a competitive car. This is the most important thing, because it means that we understand which direction to go. The car has improved and that is a good sign.”
Sebastian Vettel, who finished P3 in Turkey, his first podium of the season, joked that the team performed better without Binotto there.
“I think we scored probably the most points this year for us and Mattia wasn’t here! If the next race we don’t score as many points we try again to leave him at home!” he said as per Crash.net.
“No, I don’t think it’s related to that. I don’t believe in this kind of stuff. I’ve worked with Laurent [Mekies, sporting director] already 12 and 13 years ago and I think we have come a long way, I have come a long way and yeah, he does take care of us with Mattia not being here. I think he’s a capable guy and as I said, it’s not only down to him or down to Mattia. In the end, it’s a team effort.
“There are so many people, so many different links that have to come together to have a good weekend and obviously this weekend we benefit from the conditions, probably the surface and also the wet conditions but yeah, we hope to have good races also the next three.”
Finishing P3 and P4 in Turkey has brought Ferrari back in to contention for P3 in the Constructors’ Championship.
Their tally of 130 points leaves them 24 behind Racing Point in P3 with three rounds of the season to go.