DECEMBER 23, 2019
Ferrari getting used to driver rivalry
Ferrari is "getting used to" to the inter-team battle between Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc.
The traditional Ferrari strategy is to appoint a clear number 1 driver and a solid supporting act, and for 2019 the hierarchy began in quadruple world champion Vettel's favour.
Leclerc's speed and ambition, however, soon became obvious.
"Believe me, at the beginning of the year we had some meetings that were difficult to manage," admitted team boss Mattia Binotto.
"But towards the end of the season I found myself more and more comfortable, which meant we were getting used to it as a team.
"It was certainly not an easy exercise and everyone can do better. But I believe that this is the way to optimise the results."
In Brazil, the pair clashed and Binotto insists that these sorts of "mistakes" are likely "from time to time".
"But I'm pretty sure they are also part of the growth process," he added.
Binotto said recently that Vettel and Leclerc will start 2020 "on a par", as "trying to handle them" as they are is the best way to score as many points as possible.
"When we go to Australia, there will be no number 1," he is now quoted by Austria's Kronen Zeitung newspaper.
"We'll be stronger next year. Before each race, we sit down with our drivers and discuss all the possible scenarios."