F1SA - Motor Sport News - F1 : 2009 China - Ferrari Formula 1 team puts it into perspective

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F1SA, Formula 1, F1, Formula One, FOSA

F1SA, Formula 1, F1, Formula One, FOSA
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F1 : 2009 China - Ferrari Formula 1 team puts it into perspective E-mail
Source - Ferrari Media   
Saturday, 18 April 2009
ImageIt’s no secret that Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro is struggling to be competitive at the moment.

Photo credit Ferrari Media However, Felipe Massa put this into perspective when, at the end of the first three hours of free practice for Sunday’s Chinese Grand Prix, he pointed out that this was really nothing serious compared to what had happened to the victims of the earthquake that hit the Abruzzo region of Italy on the night after the Malaysian Grand Prix.

In fact both Felipe’s and Kimi’s Ferrari F60's carried decals with the message “Abruzzo in our hearts” as a gesture of support for the victims of the disaster and as publicity for a charity initiative set up to help the region.

Our fellow Italian team, Scuderia Toro Rosso also carried a message of support, while Jarno Trulli wore the logo on his overalls.

On track, the Scuderia management and its drivers made no secret of the fact it is going through a difficult time.

Not having a diffuser similar to the ones the Paris Court of Appeal ruled on Tuesday were legal on three other teams’ cars is just one contributing factor, while taking the difficult decision to run here without the KERS system that the team used at the two opening rounds, compounds the lack of performance, compared to the current front runners.

Therefore, although Friday’s practice times are not always significant, the fact that Felipe and Kimi ended the day in twelfth and fourteenth places respectively is at least indicative of a less than optimum performance level.

The names at the top of the time sheet on Friday are those we have come to expect this season. Winner of the two opening Grands Prix of the season, Jenson Button was quickest, with his team-mate Rubens Barrichello in third spot.

Splitting the two Brawn GP cars is the Williams-Toyota of Nico Rosberg. Next up are the Red Bull Renault duo of Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel, the fastest of the “old style” diffuser cars, while Jarno Trulli completes the top six for Toyota .

One element that had concerned all teams before Friday’s practice sessions was the suitability of the two types of Bridgestone tyre, the Super-Soft and the Medium, the same as used in Melbourne.

At the Australian venue, both had proved somewhat difficult to manage, but here, on the grippier Shanghai track surface, all seems to be well on the tyre front.

The qualifying session will no doubt give a clearer picture on this element of the package and on just how much of a challenge the Scuderia will be facing on Sunday.
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