A weekend of missed opportunities for Scuderia Ferrari, after being strong all weekend in the practice sessions and in qualifying both Ferrari’s drivers ended the Canadian race in less than ideal places.
Just eleven points for the red team after a race when they were entering with full confidence that a very good result can be obtained. A poor tyre strategy robbed Alonso of a top 3 finish and a driver error pushed Massa down to tenth place after he spun at turn 1 in lap 6. After this weekend poor performance the Scuderia finds itself fourth in the Constructors’ championship.
Stefano Domenicali: “There’s a certain feeling of disappointment this afternoon and there’s no point denying it. It’s the first weekend in which we have not got the most out of what we had, but it’s also down to the fact that the level of expectation was higher thanks to the progress we have made. Let’s not forget that yesterday we were fighting for pole and today, we were in the battle for the win right to the end: in Bahrain, a month and a half ago, not a year ago, we only got one driver into Q3 and we finished the race one minute off the winner. Today, we made two mistakes: we did not cover Vettel when the German stopped the second time and Felipe’s spin in the early stage of the race. All things considered, the first error cost us relatively little, while the second came at a higher price, because Felipe, who nevertheless had another good weekend after the one in Monaco, had the pace to stay with the lead group. Having made this preliminary analysis we need to look at the weekend in terms of the championship. Fernando is only two points off the leader and the F2012 is back to being competitive enough to fight with the best. However it was important to score points on a track that, going into the event, was definitely not one that suited us: knowing we can count on a driver like Fernando, capable of completing a year’s races all in the points is a factor that has its part to play when it comes to thinking about the title race. We must continue to push on the development to close the gap which still separates us from pole position: only when we have done this can we claim to have reached our first objective. Another theme we need to look into further is the tyre degradation, which is proving to be ever more the key to this season.”
Fernando Alonso: “Today we tried to win the race, but the gamble of only making a single stop did not pay off. When Hamilton came back into the pits for his second stop, we chose to try and play our hand: now it’s easy to say that we should have made that choice too, but it would have meant we had tried nothing and we could also have lost position to Vettel. The last laps were very long indeed: the tyres dropped off suddenly and I was too slow to defend myself from those coming up behind. My engineer was telling me to hold them off but there was no way I could do it. The real problem today was the tyre degradation, definitely not the strategy, which at the very most cost us one place, but let’s not forget that it was that very same strategy that allowed to us to get ahead of Vettel at the first stop. The car was competitive practically all race long: it wasn’t the quickest because here the McLaren, as was expected, was very quick, but definitely we have made a step forward in terms of performance. We need to work out how to improve the tyre degradation: it can be affected by very minor factors such as a few degrees more or less in temperature, although here maybe they had also come to the end of their life. It is not a tyre world championship, but every detail must be studied to aim for victory. For the first time this year, we have not just been trying to limit the damage, in that we were actually aiming for the win. It’s a positive sign and now we must confirm it at Valencia and Silverstone. We are definitely returning home with more confidence in our chances, because this was the most significant step forward we have made in terms of car development for a long time.”
Felipe Massa: “I am angry with myself for the mistake at Turn 1. I lost touch with the quickest group and then my tyres were vibrating too much, which meant I had to pit early. Then I tried to extend the next stint of the race as much as possible, even hoping not to stop again. Unfortunately, towards the end, I did have to make a second stop, because they were almost down to the canvas. Maybe bringing forward the final stop could have got me ahead of Kobayashi again, but it would not have changed much after that. I am disappointed, because we showed we were competitive with our main rivals: now we are there, fighting with them, which was not the case just a few races ago. Tenth place definitely does not
reflect our potential. Now it is vital we continue to work in this direction: it was a weekend in which we were always fighting for the top places and we have improved in every area and that has to be a confidence boost for the rest of the season.”