Outdated wind tunnel handicaps Ferrari

© Ubaid Parkar, 8 October 2012
© AP Photo/Kimimasa Mayama

Ferrari will be shutting down its wind tunnel as the Italian team discovered that the correlation between what is tested at its factory and at the track has not been in sync, contributing to a relatively ill-handling car this season.

Fernando Alonso has not won a race since the German Grand Prix in July with his championship lead rapidly eroding after developments introduced at circuits failed to yield results.

Team principal Stefano Domenicali revealed that the reason for the lack of performance was found in its passé wind tunnel back at its base and that the solution to upgrade it would only come next year.

“I think for sure our structure is not the best one in that respect, it is quite old, so as always we’re trying to improve the quality of the tools that we have,” Domenicali said. “And this is something that we are trying to do mainly to improve the correlation issue that we had and this is the plan: that we should be able to do in the next season.”

Ferrari introduced several updates for its cars throughout the course of the season, particularly in the second half, but not all have worked on the track because of the outdated facility.

“We considered it was coming from the tool that is… not obsolete but not really up to the speed of the new technologies that are available on the market,” he confessed.

Ferrari not only has its own wind tunnel but also the services of Toyota in Cologne at its disposal.

“As you know we are using another facility and in the next couple of weeks we will define what is the problem to be more specific than that, in order to see what’s really the time we have to spend by shutting it down and trying to improve the things that are not at the maximum level at the moment,” he pointed out.

With the handicap, Domenicali confessed that it won’t be easy for the remaining races of the season since the developments have been uncertain at best but promised to make the most out of the situation.

“The situation in the championship is very clear: if you are not able to improve the car then it is more difficult to fight for the championship because we cannot rely on the problem of the others,” he said.


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