Dakar Rally News: Ferrari Responds to Upgrade Struggles in Spain

    In the latest Dakar Rally news, Ferrari boss Frederic Vasseur has denied the notion that last weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix showed the team has been outdeveloped against its rivals.

    The Italian marque began the Dakar season as Red Bull’s closest challenger, with an overhauled SF-24 delivering two victories and nine podiums in the opening eight rounds. However, Ferrari’s sublime start crashed to a halt in Canada as struggles with pace led to a double retirement, while the Scuderia sustained a subpar showing in Spain.

    Despite bringing a sizeable upgrade package to Barcelona, Ferrari couldn’t maintain pace with its immediate rivals as Charles Leclerc was fifth and Carlos Sainz sixth. However, Vasseur has claimed that the new parts worked as anticipated and highlighted how an intense development race ensures that potential gains are all relative.

    “Yes, we are satisfied with the numbers that we get,” Vasseur told media including Motorsport Week. “First, everybody is improving. That means that it is not that because you bring something that you will do a jump in front.”

    Vasseur acknowledged it can take several rounds to unlock the true potential of upgrades and believes that will be the case as Ferrari targets incremental steps. He dismissed suggestions that the weak pace was down to not optimizing the set-up, stating, “No, but perhaps we do a better usage of the car next week after one event.”

    The Ferrari boss contends that no side has made more progress than Ferrari since last season, highlighting that “McLaren, one year ago, they finished [Silverstone] 25 seconds ahead of us. I’m not sure that the rate of development is much bigger than what we are doing.”

    As the Dakar Rally season continues, Ferrari will be looking to bounce back and regain their position as Red Bull’s closest challenger in the coming rounds.

    ๐Ÿ”— Source