Allison: Ferrari will dominate Formula One again

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James Allison, Ferrari’s chassis technical director, has said that the team will dominate Formula One once again in years to come after a disappointing run of form since Kimi Raikkonen was the team’s last drivers’ champion in 2007.

Raikkonen is set to re-join the Italian marque in 2014 after cutting ties with Lotus this year, but during his four-year absence, the team has won no further titles. Fernando Alonso’s arrival in 2010 was expected to herald a Schumacher-esque era for the team, but his efforts have been hampered by underperforming cars, requiring a titanic effort to secure him the runner-up spot in the championship in 2010, 2012 and 2013. However, Allison is confident that the pieces are finally coming into place for Ferrari.

“I have found a team hungry and determined to get back to the top of the podium at every race and championship,” he explained to Sky Italy. “It is a team that is optimistic for the future and is looking forward to dominating the sport again.

“F1 is not a quick fix sport. It is an incredibly difficult organization to get every single aspect right, and you need every aspect right to win a world championship. The team has been one-by-one picking off its weak points. It’s a work we will need to continue and a work we will never stop doing even once we do finally get ourselves back to the front.”

With there being an overhaul of the technical regulations next season, 2014 may present Ferrari with its best chance yet of returning to the very front of the grid and surpassing the all-conquering Red Bulls. For this to happen, the problems with the correlation between the wind tunnel and the track must be resolved, but should Allison’s confidence be present throughout the team, next season could be highly fruitful for the team.

Marco Andretti confident that fewer tests won’t hurt Andretti Autosport

Photo: IndyCar
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A small point of debate around the 2018 aero kit has been the manufacturer test days that took place through the Fall of 2017 and into the beginning of 2018. Chiefly, the debate has centered around teams who hadn’t participated in those manufacturer test days and if they’re starting the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season at a disadvantage as a result.

Team Penske, Ed Carpenter Racing, and A.J. Foyt Racing completed test days for Chevrolet, with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing doing so for Honda.

That left teams like Andretti Autosport out of the mix, with some voicing concerns as a result.

However, in a press conference during testing at ISM Raceway last weekend, Marco Andretti explained that he thinks Andretti Autosport should be able to catch up on development, citing the team’s resources – they’re the only IndyCar team with four full-time cars in their stable – and the fact that everyone is still adapting to the new kit.

“I feel like it’s early enough days that, yes, we can catch up,” Andretti said at ISM Raceway. “When there is anything new, a new car, new aero kit, at-track days are huge. We can sim all these things we want. To really get out there and confirm what we’re learning back at the shop is another thing.”

Ryan Hunter-Reay during testing at ISM Raceway. Photo: IndyCar

Andretti continued, “Yeah, I don’t think we should look at it like we’re behind the eight ball. With a four-car team, that’s where we can use it to our benefit. So far so good.”

Teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay, echoed Andretti’s sentiments, adding that while the situation is not perfect, they will need to adapt to it in order to remain competitive.

“Any time you have a new car, to put it into perspective, we’re on track three days on a road course before we get to (the season open in St. Petersburg). That’s a very short amount of time. It’s obviously not ideal, but we’re just going to lace up our boots and get on with it. That’s all you can do.”

Andretti Autosport will have one more team test, at Sebring International Raceway later on in February, before the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

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