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can beat Red Bull (if Verstappen doesn’t turn) – Corriere.it

by Daniele Sparisci

Sainz did better than Perez and even in the race simulations the new SF-24 was promoted by Leclerc. Here’s how and where it improved

A shot for pride, a marathon to convince. New air in the desert, a Ferrari that works hard and produces hopes. In Maranello they had kept a low profile while awaiting the verdicts from the track. The asphalt of Bahrain said several things on the second day of testing: 1) Carlos Sainz has a great desire, as well as an urgent need, to show off at the beginning of the end of his adventure in red; 2) the new machine, SF-24, was born well, he responds to commands in the same way as it was conceived in the simulator; 3) the Red Bull in the hands of Sergio Perez does not have the superpowers like when Verstappen drives; 4) in the chasing group, McLaren is in good shape, Mercedes quite well, but Ferrari seems to be the best equipped.

Sainz set the best time (1’29”921, two tenths slower than Verstappen’s 2023 pole in Sakhir) using the softer tyres, with a compound advantage of 6-8 tenths over Perez who was on the medium tyres. But the Spaniard was running with more fuel, so the difference would be minimal. However, Red Bull was not looking for performance (having already in hand the monstrous numbers collected by Max on Wednesday at his debut), the Mexican continued a series of technical tests, including the testing of the Brembo carbon discs (elements already used by Ferrari). But beyond the tactics, the data to be taken with a pinch of salt in the tests, a solid and rapid Red bike emerged in the race pace, it seems we have understood how to make the tires work. Carlos and Charles completed 141 laps (763 km) and the young prince would have completed more if he had not hit a manhole cover raised by his future teammate, Hamilton (3rd fastest).

The setback forced the session to stop for an hour, forced the mechanics to change the car floor (Sainz had things much worse in Las Vegas), but it didn’t take away Leclerc’s smile. «The feeling with the car is good, it’s much easier and more predictable. Last year at this point we didn’t know where to go, how the car would behave at each corner, but now the direction is clear.” Charles, however, doesn’t want to fuel any illusions: «Red Bull is still the reference, according to what I saw on the track».

A taste of the difference will be had on Friday, when the Ferrari driver and the world champion will simulate the qualifying laps. Every sector will be scrutinized, as happens with every movement of Christian Horner, present at the FIA ​​team principals’ conference, an institutional event. “I can’t talk about the investigation, I hope it will be resolved soon.” He was attacked head-on by the CEO of McLaren Racing, Zak Brown: «Let’s clarify, certain rumors cause damage to the whole of F1». The noise of enemies.

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February 23, 2024 (modified February 23, 2024 | 12:28)

2024-02-23 11:28:28
#beat #Red #Bull #Verstappen #doesnt #turn #Corriere.it

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