Saturday, 11 August 2007

A two-horse race?

There is an awful lot of wishful thinking optimism coming out of the Ferrari camp at the moment following Luca di Montezemolo’s visit to the team. The very public outcome of these “discussions” between the president of Ferrari and the team’s senior management was a series of motivational statements along the lines of “we’ve screwed up but we are still in with a shout”.

“We can win all the remaining races. We have the capacity to do it. The team has to believe in it,” said di Montezemelo.

There is a clear implication here that Ferrari has somehow lacked belief so far this season.

In any case the visit seems to have rubbed off on Felipe Massa who was quick to put the team’s qualifying cock-up at Hungary behind him:

“We have had some problems, which is why they [Mclaren] are ahead of us in both championships at the moment. But we still have six races to fight back. We just need to keep working hard, but it won’t be easy to be ahead of them in every race.

“Fortunately, many of the upcoming circuits will be much better suited to our package and I am sure we can win some races.”

And even Kimi Raikkonen seemed positively buoyant about the latter stages of the season (does this make me the first writer to put the words Raikkonen and buoyant in the same sentence?):

“At Istanbul, Monza and Spa-Francorchamps, where there are many long straights and fast corners, we should be able to play out the F2007’s characteristics,” the Finn said.

“We have an excellent car and I think that the Hungaroring was the only race track so far, where we could have expected to have a slight disadvantage compared to McLaren. If I had had a free track, I could have been much stronger."

So I am thinking with regards to the Mclaren hearing: do Ferrari know something we don’t?

Because to be frank, the only way Ferrari are going to win either championship is if Mclaren are docked points or given a race ban by the FIA.

The Mclaren is just too damn strong on the reliability of front. Even if Ferrari did win every single race as di Montezemelo has predicted, I can’t see it would be enough. You would expect the Mclaren’s to trail them home at the very least.

The big question is can Mclaren really go through a whole season without any DNFs? Hamilton and Alonso have finished every single race so far (correct me if I’m wrong), Hamilton only failing to finish off the podium once. The only two reliability issues have come in qualifying with Alonso’s gearbox problem at Magny Cours and Hamilton’s wheel bolt failure at the Nurburgring.

Surely the ‘Murray’ laws of F1 logic say that we should expect something of the ‘unexpected’ between now and the end of the season.

A collision between the two silver cars is not beyond the realms of possibility given the size of the current rift between Alonso and Hamilton. Maybe this is what's wetting the lips of the Ferrari mechanics.

1 comment:

Vroom! said...

The second half of the season should be exciting...can McLaren maintain, will Kimi be the star, does anyone in the middle step up?