Ferrari on right path after hitting “rock bottom” - Mekies

Ferrari Formula 1 team sporting director Laurent Mekies says that Charles Leclerc’s qualifying performance at the Nurburgring shows that the Maranello outfit is recovering after hitting “rock bottom.”

Ferrari on right path after hitting “rock bottom” - Mekies
Listen to this article

Leclerc impressed by qualifying fourth for the Eifel GP, having been in the top six in all three sessions. His teammate Sebastian Vettel again missed out on Q3, and will start 11th.

Ferrari hit a low at high-speed venues Spa and Monza, with Leclerc its best-placed driver in 13th on both occasions.

Mekies said that Leclerc’s Nurburgring performance is important because it indicates that the team is on the right track in terms of development.

“Charles did a very good job, but I think overall, it’s a good day for the team,” said Mekies. “We are coming from very tough weeks and months. Therefore it’s a good encouragement towards our efforts to find back a good direction of development.

“Not so much for today, it doesn’t matter that much for today, but at least for the directions for the future and for next year. So it’s a good sign in that direction.”

Mekies indicated that recent upgrades, including new parts introduced in Germany, played a role.

“I think there are very many factors,” he said. “I don’t think we need to get too excited about it, but I think the first part hopefully is that we’ve got a couple of small upgrades both in Sochi and here, and as I say, hopefully we have hit rock bottom a few weeks ago now and we are trying to reconstruct towards the resolutions of our issues.

“It’s a long path. I’m sure it will be up and down but I think today is the first step in that direction after Sochi and hopefully the car will have a bit more performance. Then, of course Charles did a very, very good qualifying. Very sharp straightaway. He extracted everything that could be extracted.

“And then lastly, we cannot forget that it’s a very specific weekend with no running on Friday, it’s always going to be a bit changing the order, for good or for bad. So I think it’s a combination of the three things, if I’m honest."

Read Also:

Mekies said one key factor was getting the tyres to work well in the cold conditions.

“Before coming here we were certainly very concerned about getting the tyres working in these types of conditions. Probably the only time this season. At least the only time so far that we get into that window, so we were very quite concerned in trying to do everything we can on the car to get things to work.

“Even if I forget about the competition, it proved to be reasonable for us for the condition in terms of how they were working. I don’t know how much our competitors suffered or not. 

"So I’d like to think that it was simply a lean and a sharp Saturday, and that the upgrades gave us these extra tenths or so advantage that can make a difference in such a tight pack.

“You are two-tenths ahead and you are P4 and you are in a good shape, you are three tenths behind and you are suddenly out of Q3. So I think we need to stay realistic about that.”

shares
comments

Formula 1 Eifel Grand Prix – How to watch, start time & more

Bottas and Hamilton query amount of F1 practice needed

Assessing Hamilton's remarkable decade as a Mercedes F1 driver

Assessing Hamilton's remarkable decade as a Mercedes F1 driver

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
Alex Kalinuackas

Assessing Hamilton's Mercedes stint Assessing Hamilton's remarkable decade as a Mercedes F1 driver

Why new-look Haas is a litmus test for Formula 1’s new era

Why new-look Haas is a litmus test for Formula 1’s new era

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
Jonathan Noble

Why new-look Haas is a litmus test Why new-look Haas is a litmus test for Formula 1’s new era

The Mercedes F1 pressure changes under 10 years of Toto Wolff

The Mercedes F1 pressure changes under 10 years of Toto Wolff

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
Alex Kalinauckas

Assessing Wolff's Mercedes influence The Mercedes F1 pressure changes under 10 years of Toto Wolff

The all-French F1 partnership that Ocon and Gasly hope to emulate

The all-French F1 partnership that Ocon and Gasly hope to emulate

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
GP Racing

The line-up Ocon, Gasly may emulate The all-French F1 partnership that Ocon and Gasly hope to emulate

Who were the fastest drivers in F1 2022?

Who were the fastest drivers in F1 2022?

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
GP Racing

Who were the fastest F1 drivers? Who were the fastest drivers in F1 2022?

Nico Hulkenberg: Why F1's nearly man is refreshed and ready for his return

Nico Hulkenberg: Why F1's nearly man is refreshed and ready for his return

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
Adam Cooper

Why Hulkenberg is ready for return Nico Hulkenberg: Why F1's nearly man is refreshed and ready for his return

Why Vasseur relishes 'feeling the pressure' as Ferrari's F1 boss

Why Vasseur relishes 'feeling the pressure' as Ferrari's F1 boss

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
Jonathan Noble

Why Vasseur relishes the pressure Why Vasseur relishes 'feeling the pressure' as Ferrari's F1 boss

The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023

The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023

Prime
Prime
Formula 1
Jake Boxall-Legge

F1 2023's crucial tech changes The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023