Mattiacci: Ferrari angry with 2014 performances

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Ferrari team principal Marco Mattiacci has said that the team is angry with its performance at the beginning of the 2014 F1 season, but has no intention of giving up yet.

Mattiacci was made team principal following Stefano Domenicali’s decision to resign in the wake of the team’s poor start to the season, which has left it sitting a distant third in the constructors’ standings.

Despite promising widespread changes and restructuring, the team has failed to improve in the first few races under Mattiacci’s rule, although the Italian has said that these things will take time.

“We are very angry with ourselves, but we have no intention of giving up,” he explained following the Canadian Grand Prix. “The circuit definitely didn’t suit us, given that it highlighted the strong points of some of our competitors and, on top of that, not everything went right either, given that we started from too far back and the others improved more than we did.”

In a race that just eleven cars finished, Fernando Alonso could only come home in sixth whilst Kimi Raikkonen crossed the line in tenth place. Although the team was never likely to challenge Mercedes for victory, it should have been in a position to capitalize when the German marque faltered, as it did in Canada.

Mattiacci went on to explain how the future at Ferrari is being built around its drivers and key personnel. This was a successful tactic in the late 90s and early 2000s when Michael Schumacher, Ross Brawn and Jean Todt had the team centered on them, and went on to enjoy the most dominant streak for any one team in F1 history.

“We have improved since the start of the year, but every step forward we make must be looked at in the context of what our rivals have done,” Mattiacci said. “Ferrari has begun work on a specific approach, based around a few key figures: President Montezemolo, James Allison, Fernando Alonso, Kimi Raikkonen and a group of highly talented engineers.

“It’s a case of restructuring the team, with people being given the best possible conditions in which to get the job done.”

Any plans that Ferrari may have had to make Adrian Newey a part of the team ended in Canada when Red Bull confirmed that he had signed a new long-term deal with the company. He will work in an advisory capacity from 2015.

MRTI: Juncos signs Carlos Cunha for Pro Mazda campaign

Photo: Juncos Racing
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Juncos Racing continued to bolster its entries in the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires by signing Carlos Cunha to pilot a third Juncos Pro Mazda entry for 2018. Cunha, who finished third in the 2017 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda season on the back of seven podium finishes, joins Rinus VeeKay and Robert Megennis in Juncos’ Pro Mazda lineup for 2018.

Cunha previously tested with the team at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in October and joined Juncos for the Chris Griffis Memorial test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in November, testing cars for both the Pro Mazda and Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires teams.

“It’s great to become a part of Juncos Racing,” said the 18-year-old Cunha. “I am really excited to start the 2018 season with Juncos Racing. This fall we did some testing together and from there I was able to see how focused everyone on the team is and I even felt like I became a part of their family in no time. I am confident we will get great results together next year and I look forward to learning and growing more with the team. It will be a huge pleasure and also a great responsibility to carry the number one on my car, thanks to (2017 Pro Mazda champion Victor Franzoni) and I hope to deliver it back to the team at the end of the year!”

Team owner Ricardo Juncos added, “We are excited to add Carlos to our Pro Mazda lineup. From the moment we started testing with him in early October, we knew he would be a great fit for our team. Carlos has been very quick in testing and even had an impressive showing in the Indy Lights car at the Chris Griffis test back in October. He had a great run this past season in the Pro Mazda series and we are confident he will carry that momentum into the 2018 season.”

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