In Spa-Francorchamps, even more than on the other circuits, Ferrari was in trouble. Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel were confined to 13th and 14th places in qualifying as well as in the race, victims of the weakness of their powertrain on this track where engine power is crucial, all under the watchful eye of a Carlos Sainz who will replace Sebastian Vettel at Maranello next year.
"I believe their difficulties went beyond the engine and that they also had problems with the overall grip of the car", Sainz believes, however, as for the red cars which failed 1.2 seconds from the fastest time in Q1, 2.3 seconds from pole position and 73 seconds from victory. This analysis is corroborated by Ross Brawn, sports manager of F1 and former technical director of Scuderia, in his last column.
"I've been in a situation like the one Ferrari found itself in at Spa, where you can't get the tires to work, the temperature doesn't come and the loss of performance is impressive", Brawn analysis. "No matter what people say about the deficit they might have with the engine as a result of technical clarifications, you don't waste 1.3 seconds per lap from year to year with that single indicator."
“They just couldn't fit the tires in the window. The fact that it was colder in Spa didn't help either. When that happens, the performance drops and is horrible. If they manage to do it. get the tires working again, I think the performance will come back suddenly. They still won't play for victory, but it will become more respectable. "
Renault facing a "puzzle"
Brawn also reviewed the excellent performance of Renault : Daniel Ricciardo and Esteban Ocon finished the Belgian Grand Prix in fourth and fifth place, the Australian having the fastest lap in the race on a regular basis, although Lewis Hamilton managed his tires at the end of the race. This contrasts sharply with a completely blank race in Barcelona, where the R.S.20 did not have the necessary pace.
"This is an excellent result for Renault", writes Brawn. “Daniel Ricciardo was particularly impressive, the Australian having had a brilliant pace from Friday practice to the race to qualifying. His speed at the end of the Grand Prix was dazzling: he clocked the fastest lap, and that's okay. do wonders for his confidence and that of the team. "
“The headache that Renault faces is the irregularity of its performance. The car looked very competitive this weekend, and yet in the previous race in Barcelona it was not very good. That's their challenge. They need consistency to be truly in the battle. It's the next step for them. But let's not take anything away from what they did this weekend, it was a very impressive performance. "
Renault scored 43 points at the British and Belgian Grands Prix but only 16 in the other five. The Losange is sixth in the constructors' championship, nine short lengths from third place.
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