Italian GP: Ferrari result “hardly surprising”

Both Ferraris were expected to perform poorly and for the first time since 1984 there will not be a Ferrari in the top 10 at Monza. 

Charles Leclerc qualified in 13th a year after winning the illustrious home race for Ferrari and Sebastian Vettel didn’t escape Q1.

He qualified in 17th behind both customer Haas cars and Kimi Raikkonen’s Alfa Romeo.

“The result is very disappointing but unfortunately, hardly surprising. As was the case in Spa a week ago, we knew that on tracks like these, with characteristics that highlight our car’s weaknesses, we would struggle.” said Laurent Mekies, sporting director of the team.

“Now we and the drivers have to focus to be as well prepared as possible for tomorrow’s race, ready to make the most of any opportunity that could come our way. That’s for right now, but even more importantly, we must continue to work hard to improve the car for this season and the next.”

Ferrari had similar woes in Belgium last week qualifying in 13th and 14th and finishing in 13th for Vettel and 14th for Leclerc in the race.

The coup de grâce came when they made minor contact mid race and Ferrari decided to pit Leclerc to seemingly get them away from each other.

They appeared to have given up hope and just wanted to get to the end.

Mekies went onto mention the performance of Ferrari’s junior drivers in Formula 2.
“On a difficult day like this, there was one ray of sunshine thanks to the guys in the Ferrari Driver Academy who are racing in Formula 2, with Mick Schumacher taking his first win of the season.

“It’s great to see that, at the moment, the top three in the series, leader Robert Shwartzman, Callum Ilott and Mick himself, are all products of our Academy.”

Mick Schumacher got a lightning start going from seventh to second by turn one and took his first F2 win of the season which was a poignant moment considering all the triumph his father Michael achieved for Ferrari and Italy.

Callum Illot led the way until he stalled in the pits and had to fight back to the middle of the points from the back.

Robert Shwartzman and Illot are on 134 points and Schumacher is just behind on 131.

Whether Ferrari can repeat the success of the junior formulae in F1 is yet to be seen but it is obviously going to be a struggle to even scrape points.