No guarantee tyre issues are resolved, admits Vasseur

No guarantee tyre issues are resolved, admits Vasseur

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The tyre wear issue that plagued Ferrari throughout 2023 appears to be a thing of the past, but team boss Fred Vasseur isn’t taking anything for granted.

Without doubt, tyre wear during the races was the Maranello outfit’s Achilles heel last year, whereas this year the Italian team appears to be on top of things.

Indeed, in Suzuka, despite a disappointing performance in qualifying the team was convinced that its race pace would put it in contention, which proved to be the case.

However, Vasseur is taking nothing for granted.

“From the beginning of the season we are much better on the tyre management,” said the Frenchman, according to Motorsport.com. “And degradation, we were I think able to do the fastest lap in Jeddah and Melbourne on the last lap. It was almost the case today for one-tenth.

“I think we did a very good step forward on this one,” he continued, “we worked a lot on the weaknesses, and we improved massively on the tyre management, drivers, strategy, and the team.

“And yeah, for sure, we now have some other weaknesses, and we have to improve somewhere else for sure if we want to do a better job. But I think this one is very well under control now.

“But what is true one day, it’s not true the other day, on the tyre management,” he admitted. “And we don’t have to consider that this is done. Next week in China will have another tarmac, different weather conditions, and it will be a new challenge.”

Asked if the anticipated cooler conditions in Shanghai might be a benefit, he said: “In China, we will have the opportunity to test in colder conditions. But I don’t know, because also we did only FP3 in colder conditions,” he added, referring to the limited running at Suzuka.

“I’m not sure that we are in a better shape, you never know about the engine settings, level of fuel. The deg was under control for us on Saturday, but also for them. And it was almost the same today.

“Everything went very well on Sunday,” he continued. “The strategy was the good one for both cars, the defending of the position on track, tyre management was under control, the pit stops went well, the pace was okay.

“I’m very convinced that we need a good Sunday. And if we have to change something, it’s more the Saturday that we have to improve, rather than the Sunday. But it was a good job, and a good teamwork.”

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