French GP: Ferrari admit upgrades aren't 'perfect' as Mercedes impress
Ferrari still 0.6s behind Mercedes after upgrades and will remove some parts from car; Binotto says front wing and rear wing will stay
By James Galloway
Last Updated: 21/06/19 6:04pm
Ferrari have admitted that their fresh upgrades trialled at the French GP are "not perfect", with some parts set to be removed over the weekend.
The team played down the significance of their "evolutionary" updates at Paul Ricard but tested several new elements during Friday practice - including a new front wing - with the changes aimed at curing their car's cornering problems.
But Ferrari still finished 0.6s behind Mercedes in Friday practice.
"Not perfect," was how team boss Mattia Binotto described the upgrades to reporters.
"We brought here some parts which were important for us to test to understand the direction of our developments," he continued.
"We tested some parts, some of them we will remove and some of them we will have for the rest of the weekend - so it's not an entire package that has been cancelled."
Binotto said the revised brake duct, rear wing and front wing would be remaining on the car.
He also wasn't ruling out catching Mercedes in France, adding: "We are suffering in the last sector. It's very similar to Barcelona.
"I would say it's not unexpected because that's the characteristics you may have and the car we have at the moment.
"Mercedes seems certainly stronger but the weekend is not over and there is still a lot of performance to be found. Let's see how the track evolves and how we optimise our package."
Ferrari's 'silver bullet'?
Ferrari debuted the new upgrades amid speculation they may be closer to understanding their car's problems.
"It's the general direction of travel at Ferrari," said Sky F1's Ted Kravitz. "They understand that the front of the car - the front axle, the front downforce - is the problem and they are trying to fix it."
The latest development parts come as the Scuderia work to establish why their SF90 has been losing out to Mercedes so far this season, particularly in slow corners.
And Sky F1's Mark Hughes reported in Motor Sport magazine: "It is rumoured, simulation testing of it revealed an anomaly that, when traced back, showed up a fundamental error in the car's aero mapping that has been there all season.
"When the real world error was replicated in the simulator, a test driver found the car was 0.3s slower around Barcelona. The implication being that the car has been carrying 0.3s-worth of mapping error for all seven races."
Binotto, however, denied the reports.
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