Webber: Ferrari may need to consider writing off 2019 soon

Ferrari should consider writing off its 2019 Formula 1 campaign and switching focus to next year if it doesn't quickly turn the tables on Mercedes, reckons Mark Webber.

Webber: Ferrari may need to consider writing off 2019 soon

With Mercedes having delivered a record-breaking five 1-2 finishes at the start of the season, the German car manufacturer has opened up a comfortable lead in the world championship.

Although Ferrari still has faith that it can get itself back in the hunt by making improvements to its 2019 car, Webber thinks the situation does not look good for the Italian outfit.

Speaking to Sky Italia ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix, Webber thinks that the next two races will be decisive for Ferrari's titles hopes – and he believes there will come a point soon where thoughts should shift to 2020.

"Unfortunately, it looks challenging for them because aerodynamically Mercedes looks like it has found a beautiful solution for its car to be quick on all types of tracks," said Webber.

"They were fast enough at Albert Park, they were fast in Bahrain – although of course Charles [Leclerc] should have won that race but didn't – but generally the Mercedes is a very versatile car at the moment.

"If the season is going for the next three months like this then Ferrari will have to focus on next year's car already. If they come to Canada and they are a long way behind, then they are in big trouble."

More from Monaco:

Webber says as well as Ferrari not having the quickest car, it has also suffered because its race strategy hasn't been good enough.

"[Mercedes] are very organised, especially on race day," added the Australian. "They look very composed, very relaxed. Of course they trust all of the practice that they put into play and they are very good under pressure.

"Unfortunately I see Ferrari with the strategy and everything, they look like they are a little bit disorganised. They are what we say in English, reactive, not proactive. They are very reactive to what is happening, they are not on the front foot.

"I know it is always easy to be like that with a slower car but I think they are... in Baku for example, with Charles they could have done a different strategy there. I think in Barcelona always swapping the cars, they are fighting each other and not fighting Mercedes."

Webber also says that his former Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel is facing a 'double problem' by having a slow car and a quick teammate, although he reckons the German could still come back strong in 2019.

"Challenging times for him because of course every year that goes by you get a little bit older, and you have to reassess how your profession is. He has a lot of experience, and it is one thing to have the problem if Ferrari are fast and winning races and you are sharing the victories with your teammate, this is one thing.

"But when you are not sharing the victories, then you have pressure because the team is not winning and then you have pressure because your teammate is there. It is a double problem.

"I believe he is still strong to do a good job and to come back to a degree. Charles is very relaxed, beautiful nature, rock star for the sport – it is what we need.

"But Sebastian still needs that last little bit of support in the team, whether it is engineering, what it is I am not sure. I still think there is an opportunity for some extra people to make this last part of the jigsaw [for him] to execute in the best way."

Tom Kristensen and Mark Webber

Tom Kristensen and Mark Webber

Photo by: Gareth Harford / Sutton Images

shares
comments
Mercedes to run red halo as Lauda tribute

Previous article

Mercedes to run red halo as Lauda tribute

Next article

How Lauda shaped the dominant Mercedes machine

How Lauda shaped the dominant Mercedes machine
Load comments
How Ferrari got its F1 recovery plan working Prime

How Ferrari got its F1 recovery plan working

After its worst campaign in 40 years, the famous Italian team had to bounce back in 2021 – and it appears to be delivering. Although it concedes the pole positions in Monaco and Baku paint a somewhat misleading picture of its competitiveness, the team is heading into the 2022 rules revamp on much stronger footing to go for wins again

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness Prime

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness

Long-awaited wins for ex-Formula 1 drivers Marcus Ericsson and Kevin Magnussen in IndyCar and IMSA last weekend gave F1 a reminder of what it is missing. But with the new rules aimed at levelling the playing field, there’s renewed optimism that more drivers can have a rewarding result when their day of days comes

Formula 1
Jun 17, 2021
The F1 figures Red Bull and Mercedes can't afford to see again Prime

The F1 figures Red Bull and Mercedes can't afford to see again

OPINION: An interloper squad got amongst the title contenders during Formula 1’s street-circuit mini-break, where Red Bull left with the points lead in both championships. But, as the campaign heads back to purpose-built venues once again, how the drivers of the two top teams compare in one crucial area will be a major factor in deciding which squad stays in or retakes the top spot

Formula 1
Jun 16, 2021
Why Alfa's boss is up to the task of securing a stronger F1 future Prime

Why Alfa's boss is up to the task of securing a stronger F1 future

Two tenth places in recent races have lifted Alfa Romeo to the head of Formula 1's 'Class C' battle in 2021, but longer-term the Swiss-based squad has far loftier ambitions. With the new 2022 rules set to level out the playing field, team boss Frederic Vasseur has good reason to be optimistic, as he explained to Motorsport.com in an exclusive interview

Formula 1
Jun 15, 2021
How Barnard's revolutionary McLaren transformed F1 car construction Prime

How Barnard's revolutionary McLaren transformed F1 car construction

The MP4/1 was pioneering by choice, but a McLaren by chance. STUART CODLING relates the tangled (carbon fibre) weaves which led to the creation of one of motor racing’s defining cars

Formula 1
Jun 15, 2021
Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool Prime

Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool

Wind tunnel work forms the bedrock of aerodynamic development in Formula 1. But as Pat Symonds explains, advances in virtual research are signalling the end of these expensive and complicated relics.

Formula 1
Jun 13, 2021
Why Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour Prime

Why Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour

The newspapers, naturally, lingered over Max Mosley’s tainted family history and niche sexual practices. But this is to trivialise the legacy of a big beast of motor racing politics. Stuart Codling weighs the life of a man whose work for safety on both road and track has saved hundreds of thousands of lives, but whose penchant for cruelty remains problematic and polarising.

Formula 1
Jun 12, 2021
Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture Prime

Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture

Sergio Perez has spent most of his career labouring in Formula 1’s midfield, wondering whether he’d ever get another shot at the big time. Red Bull has handed him that chance and, although life at the top is tough, the Baku winner is doing all the right things to get on terms with Max Verstappen, says BEN ANDERSON

Formula 1
Jun 11, 2021