Formula 1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone hopes that Ferrari will “get their act together” for the 2017 season after failing to mount a challenge for the championship this year.
Ferrari entered 2016 tipped to challenge Mercedes’ dominance and even topple the German marque from its perch at the top of the F1 pecking order.
However, Ferrari has endured a winless campaign so far that has also seen Red Bull overtake it in the constructors’ championship, as well as winning two races.
Speaking to the official F1 website, Ecclestone spoke about Ferrari’s fortunes in 2016, and said that he did not envy the challenge facing team principal Maurizio Arrivabene.
“All I hope is that Ferrari get their act together and start winning races,” Ecclestone said.
“What Maurizio desperately needs is a good back-up support like Mercedes have got, for example. If he had the support that Mercedes has, they would win races – for sure.
“I am also sure that you will see a different Ferrari next year.”
Ecclestone also said that Ferrari has gone back to being run like an “Italian team”, making things harder for four-time world champion and lead driver Sebastian Vettel, who hails from Germany, to build the operation around him.
“When I got Jean Todt to take his position and go to Maranello, which was a bit of a risk for Jean to do, it was an all-Italian team and they were a bit concerned about taking a foreigner,” Ecclestone said.
“But I told them: when you win the championship you sure will find ancestry in Jean’s family that comes from Sicily!
“Now it has gone back to being a very Italian team again. And it is run like an Italian team. So I don’t envy Maurizio’s job. I wouldn’t want to do it.”