Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne believes the Italian marque has failed to meet its targets in Formula 1 this season, but has faith in the team to bounce back next year.
Ferrari entered the 2016 campaign hopeful of cutting the gap to Mercedes at the front of the pack, and made an impressive start in Australia by running close for victory.
However, the team has failed to pick up a win in the first 13 races of the season and dropped behind Red Bull in the constructors’ championship at Hockenheim before the summer break.
Making his regular appearance at the Italian Grand Prix – Ferrari’s home race – on Saturday, Marchionne made no secret of his disappointment when summing up its season.
“I think we failed the targets, I don’t think there’s a doubt in my mind,” Marchionne is quoted as saying by Reuters.
“It’s no use putting sweeteners on the stuff, the car isn’t there and I don’t think we developed it.
“I think we started well in Australia, I think that we failed in developing the car during the season which is due to a variety of reasons.”
Ferrari’s struggles in 2016 have led to speculation about the future of its team’s management, including that of team principal Maurizio Arrivabene.
However, Marchionne expressed his confidence in the existing setup at Maranello ahead of the regulation change for 2017 that should present opportunities to bounce back.
“I feel quite comfortable that this team is quite capable of turning the fate of the Scuderia around. Unfortunately we don’t have a lot of season left,” Marchionne said.
“Let them finish the season. I think we’ll do the best we can for the rest of ’16 and the fight starts in 2017 with the first race.
“I think we have huge talent inside the structure today. Other than particular plug-ins of people, I would not be looking for the great hero to come in and turn this thing around.
“The skill level inside the Scuderia is huge. Let them work.”