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Ferrari – 2011 Canadian GP preview

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari
2010 Qualifying – 3rd, 2010 Race – 3rd

“The Montreal race is one of the most popular with the drivers and the teams: the city is very welcoming and the people are very interested in Formula One. Even though it has some very fast stretches, the Canadian track suits cars which can jump over the kerbs without losing too much balance and cars that have good traction on the exits of the slow corners. Those are both characteristics that are among the strong points of the 150° Italia. Here aerodynamic efficiency, which is our Achilles Heel at the moment, is less important and so we think we can have more chance to fight for the top places. Last year I managed to make the podium but we left Montreal with a definite sensation of having deserved more than our eventual third place. We also had the chance to win at Monaco ten days ago and it would have been good to have won there because wins have now eluded us for too long. It remains very difficult because I expect McLaren and Red Bull to be very strong but we must not count anything out. The second third of the season is starting and the situation in the championship is far from favourable. It’s true that there are still many races to go but it’s clear that we must try to find a catalyst for this title chase in terms of points.”

Felipe Massa, Ferrari
2010 Qualifying – 6th, 2010 Race – 15th

“Montreal is a place I enjoy coming to. To tell the truth, the circuit is not one of my favourites, but the city itself is great and the people are very welcoming and keen on Formula One, with plenty of support for Ferrari among the fans. My results have not been that good here, the best being a fourth place in 2005. I also had a very good race in 2008, when I was fighting for a place on the podium until a refuelling problem at my pit stop. At the very least, I would hope to aim for my best ever Canadian GP result this weekend and to finish on the podium would be great. The track presents all sorts of interesting challenges and it is not very easy to set up the car, because the track surface evolves all through the weekend, starting off with virtually no grip at all on Friday morning. You need a car that works well over the kerbs, has good traction out of the slow turns, but this is actually a fast track, so you need good top speed too. That makes finding the best set-up and the right level of aerodynamic downforce a complex task for the drivers and the engineers. We will run quite low downforce to suit this circuit and to generate more speed and with the help of some updates on the aero front I expect we can be quite competitive. As far as the championships are concerned, at Ferrari, we will never give up fighting. However, it is very clear that Sebastian (Vettel) is doing a great job, winning every race except one and even that time he finished second! He and his team are looking very strong, but we are tackling the championship one race at a time and everyone is still working very hard to make the car competitive.”

Pat Fry, Ferrari chassis director
“The Canadian race can be a bit like Monaco in that it’s all about traction and braking, although brakes come under far more stress here. Traction and how the car uses the tyres at corner exit will be the key to the life of the rear tyres. I expect we will have slightly less concerns about tyre wear than last year as the soft and super-soft compounds are now a little bit harder. Brake performance is heavily linked to the aerodynamics (because the smaller the cooling ducts, the better the aero efficiency of the car) and so we always try and run the brakes very hot as this means you get more performance out of the rest of the car. Montreal is an extreme track on a par with Singapore in terms of being the hardest on brakes, so in the factory we run the brakes on special dynos in order to tune the cooling levels required, to see how much margin we have and how extreme we can afford to be. There is always a steady stream of updates coming through and this time we will have a few changes to the diffuser and rear wing, which will bring a reasonable performance step if everything goes to plan. Hopefully we are still closing the gap to those ahead of us, allowing for the fact that others are working too.”


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