LONDON – Ferrari’s first season of joy has turned into a nightmare after the Italian team’s nightmare in Baku on Sunday, but it’s too early to give up their title hopes.
Ferrari’s first double failure to finish the Azerbaijan Grand Prix 2009 since the Australian opener due to reliability.
Charles Leclerc, starting at the pole for the sixth time in eight rounds and for the fourth time in a row, was stopped due to a power unit problem while leading – the second time he had hit Monegas in three races.
Spaniard Carlos Senz, the first break of the race, was stopped by Hydraulics.
The front page of the Italian sports daily Gazzetta dello Sport on Monday spoke of the ‘Ferrari crash’ and announced on a photo of Leclarak’s injured car that the championship had gone up in smoke.
Leclerc, who led Red Bull’s world champion Max Verstappen by 46 points after the first three races, is now 34 behind.
The Red Bulls have won the last five races, and Ferrari, the oldest and most successful team in the game that last won a title in 2008, is now 80 points behind the constructors.
Yet the wild oscillation of fortune provides some hope in a championship of 22 races where only a leisure game changer can be.
The Gremlin is hidden in Ferrari’s car but also incredibly fast.
1996 world champion Damon Hill told Sky Sports Television, “It’s definitely disappointing (for them) but the championship is still wide.
“It simply came to our notice then. It’s too early to talk about it. And the Red Bulls had their problems. “
True, Verstappen failed to finish twice, but their smiles for Sunday’s race Ferrari and Alfa Romeo point to a wider problem for retiring due to reliability with the ‘customer’ teams.
Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto says there is a lot of work to be done and noted that his team has made a huge effort to upgrade their power units and return to the top in the winter.
“It simply came to our notice then. I think as a team we will be united again, we will work hard, “he said.
“We’ve been able to do a fair job so far, we know the job isn’t done, but we’ll do it.”
After winning two of the first three races, Leclerc did not get as excited as Ferrari and was in second place with the fastest lap between them, the team was not to be disappointed, Binoto said.
Time is not in favor of Ferrari with the next race in Canada this weekend.
“The trend has gone against Ferrari, the trend has gone towards the Red Bull and now it’s going towards the Max,” Hill said. “Ferrari has obviously lost… and they have a lot to think about.”
F1: Charles Leclerc, Ferrari hit the latest ‘significant’ push
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