Ferrari Formula 1 chief Maurizio Arrivabene felt the Italian marque’s victory in Sunday’s Hungarian Grand Prix proved its strength of character after soaking up the pressure from rival team Mercedes.
Sebastian Vettel nursed his car to victory despite struggling with a handling issue for much of the race, causing him to slow and come under pressure from teammate Kimi Raikkonen and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton.
Vettel held on to head up a one-two finish for Ferrari, marking its first victory in two months and extending the German’s lead at the top of the drivers’ championship heading into the summer break.
Team principal Arrivabene was full of praise for both drivers speaking after the race, believing the victory against the odds was a reflection of Ferrari’s DNA.
“A great race and a result obtained in far from easy circumstances,” Arrivabene said of the race win.
“Once again it demonstrated the strength of character at Ferrari. Congratulations to the guys here and back in Maranello, working together in what is the mark of a great team.
“Seb drove a magnificent race, managing to keep the lead despite the problem with the steering wheel. He was helped by a great performance from Kimi who demonstrated, not only that he is a champion, but also that he is a true team-player.”
The performance from Raikkonen appears to have boosted his chances of keeping his Ferrari race seat for 2018, with CEO Sergio Marchionne being quoted in Hungary as saying the Finn’s odds of being retained were better than 50 per cent.