Vettel admits Ferrari held back on power in testing
After Mercedes accused Ferrari of not displaying the true power of their engine at testing in Barcelona last week, Sebastian Vettel admits that showing off their power isn’t on the agenda for the moment.
At the Circuit de Catalunya a week ago, the German recorded Ferrari’s fastest lap, but it was over 2.4 seconds adrift of his Mercedes counterpart, Valtteri Bottas.
Even though thereafter Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto said he was “concerned” about the lack of pace, Mercedes revealed in a post-testing brief that they believe it was all a ruse.
“No-one wants the egg on their face of claiming that they are faster than another team, because they can never know for certain what was hidden or what is coming next,” the brief said.
“For example, will Red Bull bring a significant upgrade package to the second test? Why have Ferrari spent this test running their PU consistently at much lower levels than their partner teams?”
Vettel has since confirmed that they weren’t trying to maximise the power, but rather check car and engine reliability.
“You can play around a lot with engine modes etcetera,” the German told the media after his round of testing
“Right now the target is not to prove the maximum power of the engine, the target is to do as many laps as possible. Obviously, we’ve done a lot in terms of mileage on the benches to make sure the car is reliable.
“But ramping up the engine and so on, it’s probably not something you want to do in testing and certainly not to show everyone.
“It’s not on the agenda as far as I know.”
Ferrari finished second in the 2019 Formula 1 championship last season, but were 239 points adrift of the eventual winners, Mercedes, in the end.
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