Ferrari give themselves “six out of ten” so far (VIDEO)

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Ferrari chief designer Nikolas Tombazis admits the team have missed opportunities in the opening rounds of the championship.

“If I was to score our overall performance, I would only give it a 6 out of 10,” said Tombazis.

“That’s for two main reasons: one is that we are not yet quite where we want to be. In the first four grands prix, we were not really able to fight for pole position and that is one of our main objectives at the moment.

“Secondly, if you look at the actual results, even if it’s true we’ve had a win, which naturally we can be very pleased about, we have also had two very bad results where we scored very few points. However, I reiterate, that overall, we can be optimistic for the future.”

However Tombazis added the team are “reasonably optimistic about the rest of the season”.

He said that the team had gleaned a lot of information from studying the car’s performance and his assessment of the car’s performance is more positive than 12 months ago: “We have seen that we have been stronger in certain conditions, both in terms of track type and weather, than in others – this includes looking at the type of corners, whether a circuit involves heavy braking and other similar parameters.”

“Overall, depending on the circuit, some of these strengths and weaknesses will be highlighted and therefore, based on what we have seen so far, we do not expect a constant performance level over the next few races, but rather we do expect to be reasonably competitive in most conditions.”

IndyCar Grand Prix of Alabama final practice report

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Will Power posted the fastest lap in the third practice session for the Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala. with a speed of 122.953 mph.

Rookie Robert Wickens (122.552 mph) was second fast, foretelling a continuation of his incredible rookie season.

Scott Dixon (122.237), Ryan Hunter-Reay (122.231) and Alexander Rossi (122.106) rounded out the top five.

The practice was interrupted several times for incidents. 

Ed Jones spun off track in turn five after locking up his brakes with 30 minutes remaining in practice three. He was able to drive back to the pits under his own power.

With 20 minutes still on the clock, Jordan King took a trip into the fence after posting a fastest lap of 121.753 mph. He sustained substantial left side damage to his car and came back to the pits on the hook.

“I’m annoyed really,” King said afterward on the live stream at IndyCar.com. “I slightly locked the inside front, then just stayed off onto the grass and that was it. But I wasn’t really even pushing that hard.”

With two minutes remaining, Charlie Kimball lost power and pulled off the track, bringing an end to the practice session.

Dixon also had an off-road excursion.