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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 1:23 pm 
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One of the most defining things about this year's championship is the myth of the Ferrari. In particular, it is taken as given that the Ferrari is slow, and Alonso is taking it to places it shouldn't be.

Leaving aside the physical impossibility of making a car go faster than it is capable of, this presupposes other drivers are all useless and unable to drive their cars anywhere near they are capable of being driven.

Don't get me wrong, Alonso is a great driver, but he is also the driver who was shown up by a rookie team mate who admittedly, was Lewis Hamilton, but an F1 rookie nonetheless. (Hamilton should have won the WDC that year but for McLaren stupidity in China.) They wound up on the same number of points that year.

So we know Alonso is not superhuman, and can be beaten. But this means we can also judge very well how fast his Ferrari actually is compared to a car driven by an ex-team mate who appears to be at least his equal.

Now the McLaren is widely regarded as a car that ought to have done much better, and perhaps should be winning this year's championship but for reliability, so it is a good benchmark against the Ferrari. The Ferrari is also widely regarded as being much better in race trim than in qualifying. [This has actually been the case for Ferrari for a long time. Michael Schumacher had more wins than pole positions in a Ferrari (in fact he had more wins in a Ferrari than he had pole positions in his whole career).]

Australia - slower than McLaren
Malaysia - faster than McLaren in the wet
China - slower than McLaren
Bahrain - slower than McLaren (but Alonso finished ahead due to Hamilton's botched pitstops)
Spain - faster than McLaren
Monaco - finished ahead. It's Monaco, so let's call it a tie
Canada - tie. Ferrari messed up on tyres. Could have finished ahead of the McLaren.
Europe - Ferrari faster in the race (Hopeless in qualifying though)
Great Britain - Ferrari faster
Germany - Ferrari faster (quali and race)
Hungary - slower than McLaren
Belgium - slower than McLaren (difficult to call, but Jenson was supreme)
Italy - slower than McLaren
Singapore - slower than McLaren
Japan - faster than McLaren (shame Alonso retired)
Korea - Difficult (LH anti-roll bar failure), but on the basis of Massa's performance, will have to say Ferrari was faster than McLaren
India - faster than McLaren
Abu Dhabi - slower than McLaren (LH was absolutely killing everyone in the race)

So the Ferrari has not been the class of the field, but it has been plenty fast, and fast enough for Alonso to have a championship challenge. It has also been reliable, with no mechanical retirements for Alonso, unlike the McLaren.

Obviously, it would have been nice to be able to compare the Ferrari with the Red Bull, but there is no benchmark to compare the two cars without bringing drivers into it.

The bottom line is that, aside from the first few races of the season, Ferrari have been very competitive, and have engineered a bulletproof car again. The myth that the Ferrari is slow is just that, a myth. It's qualifying performance belies what is actually a very good racing car, and while Alonso is maximising what he gets out of it, and make no mistake, he is a great driver, he is hardly performing miracles in that car. He is doing exactly what he is paid to do, and that is make the car perform as it is capable.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 1:37 pm 
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It's been tricky to judge the competitiveness of the cars this season, particularly early on. In the early races it was impossible to tell if Alonso was overperforming or if Massa was underperforming. I think the Ferrari has been better this season than some have given it credit for, but it clearly hasn't been the fastest car at any race this year (with the possible exception of Hockenheim, though I'd say McLaren probably had the edge).

It's not just Ferrari that have had this issue. I've been trying to work out all season just how good the Sauber is: they could have won 3 races but they've been absolutely nowhere at others. Maldonado has stuck his Williams at the front of the grid at a few races this year. Even McLaren were difficult to read in the early part of the year when Button was really struggling: was it Hamilton or Button who showed the car's true performance in Canada?


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 1:53 pm 
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the ferrari is one hell of a race car, and the best out there during wet weekend.

downside would be qualifying on normal weekend, where Rbr, mclaren had the upper hand. However, its monstrous straightline speed often aid alonso in overtook the cars in front. But pole sitter would be out of reach.

it was clear that massa was underperforming earlier due to balance setup issues to make him comfortable.


Last edited by NvrDieYoung on Sat Nov 10, 2012 1:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 1:53 pm 
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mkone wrote:
In particular, it is taken as given that the Ferrari is slow, and Alonso is taking it to places it shouldn't be.


What you say is true to some extent but while it is impossible for anyone to drive a car faster than it is capable of, it might be true that Alonso manages to get more out of a given car than anyone else on the grid.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:00 pm 
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Alonso only says that to boost his ego


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:07 pm 
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Their racepace is good but they definitely have a fundemental problem of some sort in dry qualifying (which has been apparent everywhere except Monza and Monaco for some reason). This may or may not be due to DRS reattachment problems as theorised by Gary Anderson, personally I believe that to only be one of a few possible factors if true.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:31 pm 
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mkone wrote:
Australia - slower than McLaren
Malaysia - faster than McLaren in the wet
China - slower than McLaren
Bahrain - slower than McLaren (but Alonso finished ahead due to Hamilton's botched pitstops)
Spain - faster than McLaren
Monaco - finished ahead. It's Monaco, so let's call it a tie
Canada - tie. Ferrari messed up on tyres. Could have finished ahead of the McLaren.
Europe - Ferrari faster in the race (Hopeless in qualifying though)
Great Britain - Ferrari faster
Germany - Ferrari faster (quali and race)
Hungary - slower than McLaren
Belgium - slower than McLaren (difficult to call, but Jenson was supreme)
Italy - slower than McLaren
Singapore - slower than McLaren
Japan - faster than McLaren (shame Alonso retired)
Korea - Difficult (LH anti-roll bar failure), but on the basis of Massa's performance, will have to say Ferrari was faster than McLaren
India - faster than McLaren
Abu Dhabi - slower than McLaren (LH was absolutely killing everyone in the race)


Malaysia - Alonso was MUCH faster in the wet. If the Ferrari was so dominant you'd expect Massa to be a bit faster than the other, not doing donuts at T9 and have mediocre pace in the wet. And the Ferrari was much slower in the dry.
Spain - Lewis was 0.5s faster and qualy and got to 8th (I think) in the race so I'd go for a faster McLaren.
Europe - The Ferrari was better in the race but if I'm to tell you that you can start 11th and have good race pace or on the front row in Valencia of all places what would you choose?
Monaco - Ferrari was faster in the race. It helped that Alonso could do couple of very slow laps with Massa behind them (meaning he won't attack him) so he can push at the end of the stint and overtake him. But the Macca was so slow compared to the Ferrari and RBR that it would have lost the position anyway.
Korea - I'd go for McLaren to be honest. Hamilton was catching Alonso, no? Massa didn't get past Hamilton until Lewis' problems.
India - 50/50 for me, to be honest.

And anyway, that's a good comparison between Macca and Ferrari but those are not the only top teams (during events this year). I'll do it from Ferrari perspective, if that's fine with out.

Australia - RBR, McLaren, Lotus, Merc (50/50 on this one) faster. Williams faster but Alonso's KERS managed to fend off Maldonado.
Malaysia - Sauber, RBR, McLaren (and that's just on the top off my head because I can't remember what Williams' pace or Kimi's pace were)
China - Merc, Red Bull, Macca faster.
Bahrain - Lotus, Macca, Red Bull

And so on. Every race weekend there were/are at least two teams which are faster. Wet qualies kept Alonso in the game.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:32 pm 
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i agree with the op. all year we have heard the lotus is a tick slow in quali, but good in race pace. all year we hear how alonso is making up for a slow ferrari car.

i believe the ferrari is the same as the lotus, a tick slower in quali but has fine race pace. alonso is a darn good driver, but isn't suffering from a slow car.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:44 pm 
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"Slow" is a relative term. Of course Ferrari is quicker than most of the teams. But does anyone think that the Ferrari has been as quick as the RBR in this second half of the season, with Vettel and Webber locking the front row and escaping into the distance (barring driving mistakes or mechanical trouble) every weekend? When Alonso and says they are "slow", you have to understand "not quick enough for winning the Championship", which is Ferrari's ultimate goal.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:47 pm 
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pc27b wrote:
i agree with the op. all year we have heard the lotus is a tick slow in quali, but good in race pace. all year we hear how alonso is making up for a slow ferrari car.

i believe the ferrari is the same as the lotus, a tick slower in quali but has fine race pace. alonso is a darn good driver, but isn't suffering from a slow car.


they are actually much consistent compare to Lotus

Earlier without coanda, Lotus rely on the tyre lottery...and falling short on 2nd half of the season when all the team had a grasp on tyre behavior.

And now, slowly they are clawling back with the first design of their coanda exhaust.

Ferrari however has been massive on race day all season long with poor qualifying performance hampering them. However, with their straightline speed, they can make up for the grid position on sunday easily.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:55 pm 
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good post.

I think its important to also acknowledge that when people talk about a slow car maybe they are also referring to a comparison with the Red Bull. IE he was leading the championship ahead of the red bull drivers...thats got to count for something...

But yes its not 'slow - slow'....but comparatively - it is a bit slower than the Red Bulls and McLarens...


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:01 pm 
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I dont understand the OP's reason for comparing Ferrari to McLaren only?
Race pace isn't a strength of the McLaren this year either and visa versa for the Ferrari with qualifying but there are also different teams with different characteristics that have been better than Ferrari at points this year.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:19 pm 
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i'm not saying the ferrari has been faster than the rb recently. just pointing out in my opinion the media "story" this year is how "slow" the ferrari is and how alonso has gotten finishes way above the cars capability. while to me, the lotus looks to have the same issues. can't get the best lap during quali, but has good race pace. and that is the media "story" on lotus. makes no sense to me.

either way, the championship battle couldn't be much better for us fans with two to go !


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:21 pm 
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It has still been slower than at least 2 other cars the whole season. The problem for them has been out and out pace on low fuel qualifying.
And that is no myth.
Never has been there a weekend where we though ahh, Ferrari looks supreme here. That has not happened in any race this year. On the other hand, we have seen RedBulls and McLaren dominate the entire weekend at times.

And this is where the problem lies. They have bullet proof reliability which is good. But their drivers have been forced to do lot more work to gain positions than their direct rivals. Most of the times this has basically eliminated the possibility of win due to time lost in the beginning. This is precisely why everyone agrees that Ferrari is not the easiest car out there to win championship in dominant manner.
Even if they do win, it will be a last gasp scrappy win. On the other hand their main rival RedBull has had 7 dominant races in a row to go with 2-3 other races before hand where they also dominated the timesheets.
Thats 10 races where their car was right at the top. Thats half season. Then there were 6-7 weekends where McLaren dominated the timesheets.

This is why the team and specially Alonso has been praised about how they are doing the actual work come Sunday on the race track but at the same time they are been called out by media and fans for lack of performance.
There is no myth or even ounce of doubt in the people who actually know few things which involves Ferrari themselves that they are not on par with the top 2 teams. They know it. They have their job cut out for them. If Alonso manages front row qualifying result, I can actually safely say he will win that race, but that has not happened too many times.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:25 pm 
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Also, 'slow' and 'fast' are relative depending on how and where they are applied. With their usual race set-up, McLaren are the fastest car in a straight line and Red Bull, with their high downforce setting, come way down the list. But of course, the GP tracks are circuits with corners, loops etc where downforce matters and so the advantage or otherwise to any particular car varies from one race to another.

Ferrari probably try to set their car up to get the best of both worlds and while that is fine on principle, they probably need to do more work to get their car perfect. I am sure that's what they are doing and one reason why Alonso signed-up with them till 2016 (the other being the money, of course)

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:28 pm 
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The problem with Ferrari is it's qualifying pace. That puts them on the back foot on Sunday's because by they clear the cars that are slower than them, they're about 5 seconds off the lead, and that is very hard to make up.

There has never been a point this season, bar Monza, where the Ferrari his lit up the timing sheets. McLaren have dominated whole weekends. Red Bull have dominated whole weekends. Ferrari haven't come close to dominating at any point.

The Ferrari isn't slow as in, woefully's off the pace. It's slow as in "Not fast enough to win the championship" which is what Ferrari aim and exist to do. That's the difference.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:32 pm 
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RunningMan wrote:
The Ferrari isn't slow as in, woefully's off the pace. It's slow as in "Not fast enough to win the championship" which is what Ferrari aim and exist to do. That's the difference.


Yep, I'd go further and argue that it's race pace is on a par with McLaren and only marginally behind Red Bull on average. Another big factor has been Alonso's good starts and decisiveness when overtaking, rarely getting held up for long like say Webber has often been. Only its quali pace has been anything resembling slow.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:48 pm 
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davidb23 wrote:
RunningMan wrote:
The Ferrari isn't slow as in, woefully's off the pace. It's slow as in "Not fast enough to win the championship" which is what Ferrari aim and exist to do. That's the difference.


i agree with the first part, but not with the second. it is fast enough to win the championship as it is only ten points off the lead with two to go.

i'm just going to enjoy seeing it unfold with the unknown of austin and then brazil


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:58 pm 
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I agree with the OP - the Ferrari is not the dog slow car it was looking to be in pre-season testing and it was only such for the first 3 or so races, it's not the outright fastest, but it is more than competitive at the front, for sure.

I posted in a thread during testing/just before the Australian GP that whilst Ferrari certainly looked in trouble at the start of the season, they were over stating their troubles in an effort to raise Alonso's stock, and it has definitely worked - Alonso is now considered by many to be the best driver on the grid, citing "driving a crap car to a world championship leading position, and still very much in the hunt with 2 races to go". Whereas in actual fact, there's only one race that you could try and argue he dragged the car to the front - Germany... But that doesn't necessarily mean you're right (in my opinion, he was in the fastest/joint fastest car). In Malaysia, even admitted by Pat Fry, the wet weather suited the Ferrari, masked the flaws of its design at that stage of the season and was very quick. In Valencia, he was clearly in the 3rd fastest car, but wouldn't have been anywhere close to a win if not for Vettel and Grosjean dropping out of the race.

One of Alonso's best strengths however, is the fact that he doesn't f**k about - he doesn't wait 5, 6, 7, 8 etc laps behind a car before overtaking, he just attacks and gets the job done... That's one of the things I give him great credit for, even though it's clear the Ferrari is very good in a straight line.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:05 pm 
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If you think Ferrari's faster than the Red Bull or the Macca at the beggining of the season, I think you should stop watching F1. Ferrari was a fast car on wet tracks and a decent car in a couple of other races where it held its own against RBR and Macca.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:09 pm 
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try comparing it to the Reb bull aswell you may get different results !!
and is the Mclaren stupidity you talk about, the time when Hamilton drove it into a pit lane gravel trap at about 5mph?


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:18 pm 
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sgt.hartman wrote:
One of Alonso's best strengths however, is the fact that he doesn't f**k about - he doesn't wait 5, 6, 7, 8 etc laps behind a car before overtaking, he just attacks and gets the job done... That's one of the things I give him great credit for, even though it's clear the Ferrari is very good in a straight line.


Actually, that is a Ferrari strength, rather than an Alonso one. The Ferrari is mighty on the straights, therefore DRS plays to its strength as DRS is invariably used on straights. Contrast this with the Red Bull which struggles to pass cars because it is set up to be fastest around the track, but not on the straights, so the drivers can find it difficult to pass some top speed monsters even though it might be the fastest car on the track.

Anyone competent driver can pass with DRS in that Ferrari provided they are close enough. I think Vettel's pass on Button at Abu Dhabi was more impressive than most of Alonso's overtakes because he just doesn't have the top speed advantage over the top cars, so he had to set it up perfectly to have a chance, and it looks like his race craft isn't up to scratch because he couldn't do it in one lap.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:22 pm 
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Isn't it just stating the obivous? Ferrari sucked in dry pace for the first 4 GPs, Afterwards they were 3rd best at most circuits and 2nd best at some. Both of Ferraris poles would not have been possible in the dry.

It's still hard to win a WDC with a car that's 2nd or 3rd best.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:28 pm 
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A2jdl wrote:
try comparing it to the Reb bull aswell you may get different results !!
and is the Mclaren stupidity you talk about, the time when Hamilton drove it into a pit lane gravel trap at about 5mph?


His tyres were well shot at that time, with the canvas underneath the rubber showing. F1 cars are not the most manoeuvrable at low speed and especially without any rubber to grip anything. 900hp needs grip! McLaren ought to have pitted him early to guarantee him some points, rather than gamble on getting him to the end of the GP on an incredibly worn set of inters. When that gamble totally failed, they wound up with no point in that race, and lost the WDC by a single point. McLaren messed up. They led Raikkonen by 17 points at that point, and if LH had scored 2 points or more in China, he would have won the championship.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:33 pm 
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mkone wrote:
sgt.hartman wrote:
One of Alonso's best strengths however, is the fact that he doesn't f**k about - he doesn't wait 5, 6, 7, 8 etc laps behind a car before overtaking, he just attacks and gets the job done... That's one of the things I give him great credit for, even though it's clear the Ferrari is very good in a straight line.


Actually, that is a Ferrari strength, rather than an Alonso one. The Ferrari is mighty on the straights, therefore DRS plays to its strength as DRS is invariably used on straights. Contrast this with the Red Bull which struggles to pass cars because it is set up to be fastest around the track, but not on the straights, so the drivers can find it difficult to pass some top speed monsters even though it might be the fastest car on the track.

Anyone competent driver can pass with DRS in that Ferrari provided they are close enough. I think Vettel's pass on Button at Abu Dhabi was more impressive than most of Alonso's overtakes because he just doesn't have the top speed advantage over the top cars, so he had to set it up perfectly to have a chance, and it looks like his race craft isn't up to scratch because he couldn't do it in one lap.

This :thumbup:


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:39 pm 
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mkone wrote:
sgt.hartman wrote:
One of Alonso's best strengths however, is the fact that he doesn't f**k about - he doesn't wait 5, 6, 7, 8 etc laps behind a car before overtaking, he just attacks and gets the job done... That's one of the things I give him great credit for, even though it's clear the Ferrari is very good in a straight line.


Actually, that is a Ferrari strength, rather than an Alonso one. The Ferrari is mighty on the straights, therefore DRS plays to its strength as DRS is invariably used on straights. Contrast this with the Red Bull which struggles to pass cars because it is set up to be fastest around the track, but not on the straights, so the drivers can find it difficult to pass some top speed monsters even though it might be the fastest car on the track.

Anyone competent driver can pass with DRS in that Ferrari provided they are close enough. I think Vettel's pass on Button at Abu Dhabi was more impressive than most of Alonso's overtakes because he just doesn't have the top speed advantage over the top cars, so he had to set it up perfectly to have a chance, and it looks like his race craft isn't up to scratch because he couldn't do it in one lap.


You are kidding, right? What was so impressive about that overtake? Button was on primes and Vettel was on EIGHT LAPS YOUNGER OPTIONS. Impressive overtakes were Vettel's at the bus stop chicane (Spa), the setup for Alonso's pass on Perez in Malaysia, Alonso on Webber, Kimi, Grosjean in Valencia. All of Vettel's passes in Abu Dhabi were with ease as the RBR was very fast and the car was set-up for the race.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:46 pm 
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mkone wrote:
sgt.hartman wrote:
One of Alonso's best strengths however, is the fact that he doesn't f**k about - he doesn't wait 5, 6, 7, 8 etc laps behind a car before overtaking, he just attacks and gets the job done... That's one of the things I give him great credit for, even though it's clear the Ferrari is very good in a straight line.


Actually, that is a Ferrari strength, rather than an Alonso one. The Ferrari is mighty on the straights, therefore DRS plays to its strength as DRS is invariably used on straights. Contrast this with the Red Bull which struggles to pass cars because it is set up to be fastest around the track, but not on the straights, so the drivers can find it difficult to pass some top speed monsters even though it might be the fastest car on the track.

Anyone competent driver can pass with DRS in that Ferrari provided they are close enough. I think Vettel's pass on Button at Abu Dhabi was more impressive than most of Alonso's overtakes because he just doesn't have the top speed advantage over the top cars, so he had to set it up perfectly to have a chance, and it looks like his race craft isn't up to scratch because he couldn't do it in one lap.


I'm pretty sure the Sgt is talking about Alonso going for the gap in corners outside the DRS zones, he makes a lot of positions this way on the first few laps and after restarts. Of course like all other teams the Alonso usually chooses to exploit the DRS zones when he can, but here we're talking instinctive driving when the occasion demands it, which has nothing to do with top speed.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:46 pm 
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mkone wrote:
A2jdl wrote:
try comparing it to the Reb bull aswell you may get different results !!
and is the Mclaren stupidity you talk about, the time when Hamilton drove it into a pit lane gravel trap at about 5mph?


His tyres were well shot at that time, with the canvas underneath the rubber showing. F1 cars are not the most manoeuvrable at low speed and especially without any rubber to grip anything. 900hp needs grip! McLaren ought to have pitted him early to guarantee him some points, rather than gamble on getting him to the end of the GP on an incredibly worn set of inters. When that gamble totally failed, they wound up with no point in that race, and lost the WDC by a single point. McLaren messed up. They led Raikkonen by 17 points at that point, and if LH had scored 2 points or more in China, he would have won the championship.

if the driver had anything about him he would of said my tyres are shot and gone in for a new set, driving so he does not fall off the track.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:47 pm 
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HOERSS wrote:
Isn't it just stating the obivous? Ferrari sucked in dry pace for the first 4 GPs, Afterwards they were 3rd best at most circuits and 2nd best at some. Both of Ferraris poles would not have been possible in the dry.
It's still hard to win a WDC with a car that's 2nd or 3rd best.


I agree, and you are actually confirming it's NOT a myth with you post. When people say the Ferrari is slow they are not comparing it to a FI, Caterham or TR, they are comparing it against RB and Mclaren, their rivals for the title.

I think anyone that has a minimun understanding of what has happened this season will agree to that, other than those that just want to diminish what has been an outstanding season for Alonso, regardless of him winning the WDC or not.

I would ask the OP.. you really mean to say that Ferrari is faster or as fast as RB and Mclaren..?

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:49 pm 
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VDV23 wrote:
You are kidding, right? What was so impressive about that overtake? Button was on primes and Vettel was on EIGHT LAPS YOUNGER OPTIONS. Impressive overtakes were Vettel's at the bus stop chicane (Spa), the setup for Alonso's pass on Perez in Malaysia, Alonso on Webber, Kimi, Grosjean in Valencia. All of Vettel's passes in Abu Dhabi were with ease as the RBR was very fast and the car was set-up for the race.


I didn't say it was a particularly impressive overtake. I said it was more impressive than most of Alonso's which usually involve a much larger speed differential on the straight, and are over well before the next corner. Even with much fresher and arguably faster tyres, Vettel had to complete his overtake in the corner. Most times Alonso is well past and back onto the racing line because his car passes like the other guy is still.

If you want really impressive overtakes, go to Montoya vs Michael Schumacher in Brazil in Montoya's rookie season. Basically an out-braking contest then and that was mighty impressive. Or Schumacher on Raikkonen in Brazil in his original retirement race. Again, completed under braking, and forcing Raikkonen out wide to take a less optimal line into the corner.

The point is that the Ferrari is plenty fast in the race, and is actually better if you are starting in the midfield compared to the RB or the McLaren even.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:52 pm 
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More impressive than the Ferrari top speed is Alonso's ability on the first lap. A driver can make more of a difference to his overall result if he can dice like Alonso does in the first few laps, grab a few positions whilst the cars are bunched and keep the gain whilst the cars naturally get stung out by the dirty air and concertina effects by lap 3.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:58 pm 
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davidb23 wrote:
More impressive than the Ferrari top speed is Alonso's ability on the first lap. A driver can make more of a difference to his overall result if he can dice like Alonso does in the first few laps, grab a few positions whilst the cars are bunched and keep the gain whilst the cars naturally get stung out by the dirty air and concertina effects by lap 3.


Agree, Alonso is mightily impressive and aggressive on the 1st lap (see India vs Hamilton and Button). But his car allows him to do that too. The Ferrari is very impressive in race trim. it just qualifies badly, putting him at a disadvantage and exposing him to the odd Grosjean incident.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:06 pm 
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mkone wrote:
VDV23 wrote:
You are kidding, right? What was so impressive about that overtake? Button was on primes and Vettel was on EIGHT LAPS YOUNGER OPTIONS. Impressive overtakes were Vettel's at the bus stop chicane (Spa), the setup for Alonso's pass on Perez in Malaysia, Alonso on Webber, Kimi, Grosjean in Valencia. All of Vettel's passes in Abu Dhabi were with ease as the RBR was very fast and the car was set-up for the race.


I didn't say it was a particularly impressive overtake. I said it was more impressive than most of Alonso's which usually involve a much larger speed differential on the straight, and are over well before the next corner. Even with much fresher and arguably faster tyres, Vettel had to complete his overtake in the corner. Most times Alonso is well past and back onto the racing line because his car passes like the other guy is still.

If you want really impressive overtakes, go to Montoya vs Michael Schumacher in Brazil in Montoya's rookie season. Basically an out-braking contest then and that was mighty impressive. Or Schumacher on Raikkonen in Brazil in his original retirement race. Again, completed under braking, and forcing Raikkonen out wide to take a less optimal line into the corner.

The point is that the Ferrari is plenty fast in the race, and is actually better if you are starting in the midfield compared to the RB or the McLaren even.


I honestly don't agree with that. It wasn't all that impressive (his RBR had better straight line speed, better traction and acceleration because of the tyres) and if it was a nutcase like Maldonado or Grosjean instead of Button there it would have been suicidal move. Of course most of the overtakes in these days with DRS would be made with the help of it*. Hell, Hamilton who was seconds faster than Alonso and Vettel completed their passes in the DRS zone. Alonso has been using pretty much every oportunity he gets, DRS or not. Maldonado in Australia, Perez in Malaysia (the setup was excellent, I though. Taking much wider line at the exit of T1 so he can get better traction for T2), against Raikonnen in Bahrain and Hungary, the 1st lap in Valencia, Grosjean in Valencia, Webber in Abu Dhabi - these are not your usual easy overtakes allowed because of better straight line speed.

* Lol, that sounded quite moronic. I meant that it's normal everyone to take advantage of the DRS zone where possible.


Last edited by VDV23 on Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:07 pm 
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davidb23 wrote:
mkone wrote:
sgt.hartman wrote:
One of Alonso's best strengths however, is the fact that he doesn't f**k about - he doesn't wait 5, 6, 7, 8 etc laps behind a car before overtaking, he just attacks and gets the job done... That's one of the things I give him great credit for, even though it's clear the Ferrari is very good in a straight line.


Actually, that is a Ferrari strength, rather than an Alonso one. The Ferrari is mighty on the straights, therefore DRS plays to its strength as DRS is invariably used on straights. Contrast this with the Red Bull which struggles to pass cars because it is set up to be fastest around the track, but not on the straights, so the drivers can find it difficult to pass some top speed monsters even though it might be the fastest car on the track.

Anyone competent driver can pass with DRS in that Ferrari provided they are close enough. I think Vettel's pass on Button at Abu Dhabi was more impressive than most of Alonso's overtakes because he just doesn't have the top speed advantage over the top cars, so he had to set it up perfectly to have a chance, and it looks like his race craft isn't up to scratch because he couldn't do it in one lap.


I'm pretty sure the Sgt is talking about Alonso going for the gap in corners outside the DRS zones, he makes a lot of positions this way on the first few laps and after restarts. Of course like all other teams the Alonso usually chooses to exploit the DRS zones when he can, but here we're talking instinctive driving when the occasion demands it, which has nothing to do with top speed.


Precisely.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:21 pm 
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A2jdl wrote:
mkone wrote:
A2jdl wrote:
try comparing it to the Reb bull aswell you may get different results !!
and is the Mclaren stupidity you talk about, the time when Hamilton drove it into a pit lane gravel trap at about 5mph?


His tyres were well shot at that time, with the canvas underneath the rubber showing. F1 cars are not the most manoeuvrable at low speed and especially without any rubber to grip anything. 900hp needs grip! McLaren ought to have pitted him early to guarantee him some points, rather than gamble on getting him to the end of the GP on an incredibly worn set of inters. When that gamble totally failed, they wound up with no point in that race, and lost the WDC by a single point. McLaren messed up. They led Raikkonen by 17 points at that point, and if LH had scored 2 points or more in China, he would have won the championship.

if the driver had anything about him he would of said my tyres are shot and gone in for a new set, driving so he does not fall off the track.


Tell me WTF this thread has to do with Hamilton?

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:42 pm 
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The Ferrari has very good race pace and as of Abu Dhabi isn't a bad car at all, it's probably on par with Lotus, maybe even a little better, since even Massa is getting good results with it (when the team allows).

Qualifying pace leaves something to be desired, though, and I wonder why people aren't saying it might be because of the drivers instead of the car... Flying lap speed isn't the best of Alonso's attributes, and much of Massa's reputation as a fast qualifier came from 2008 when he had a very fast car and usually the best strategy within Ferrari (he always qualified with less fuel than Kimi). It could also be due to Ferrari not working well with certain compounds and not heating its tires quickly enough, but I think the drivers may have something to do with it, too.

So yes, I think the "Ferrari is slow" thing is probably the biggest myth of the season and a way for Ferrari to sandbag and downplay their achievements. The only race where Alonso distinctly outdrove his equipment was Malaysia. It may not be fast in the corners because of downforce issues but this is balanced by excellent straight line speed. In India Kimi couldn't get past Massa no matter what for example, it was one of the fastest cars in a straight line versus one of the slowest, so Kimi couldn't get close enough to overtake Massa in a spot where it was possible to do so.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:47 pm 
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Not slow, its pretty fast. However, not faster than the Mclaren or the redbull

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 6:11 pm 
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bartonz20let wrote:
Tell me WTF this thread has to do with Hamilton?


I mentioned LH in the original post as someone who I think most people could agree is Alonso's equal, more or less, and to then make the point that we can use their relative pace to judge the fundamental speed of their cars. I also wanted to point out that while FA and LH finished on the same number of points, LH could and probably should have finished ahead and won the WDC in his rookie season, therefore we can really compare them as drivers.

Other than that, this is a thread about the Ferrari's speed compared to the McLaren.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 6:56 pm 
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Great post I really enjoyed reading it. Listen guys, Alonso has been saying all season that his car is slow but it's true we can't tell if that is the case or not. I mean look at who his team mate is, the extremely under performing Massa, Pat Fry has even come forward and said that the car is ABLE to perform better in qualifications. I do believe if Alonso had a decent team mate the car would magically gain speed, by this I mean that it would probably qualify higher by the team mate. As great of a driver that Alonso is I think he is over rated and we need to see him compete against a good team mate. Historically Alonso has ALWAYS had problems when he was not given clear #1 status.

I believe the Ferrari is a much better car than Alonso makes it sound.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 7:09 pm 
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metamorphomisk wrote:
Not slow, its pretty fast. However, not faster than the Mclaren or the redbull


this thread should have been closed after that post. :nod:


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