S ebastian Vettel will certainly not be unhappy that the The 2016 season in Abu Dhabi is finally over. It wasn't a good year for Ferrari. There was no victory in the 20 races before the final. The Scuderia drivers got out of the title race early. For Vettel it is now only about 4th place in the drivers' standings. But Max Verstappen is not allowed to catch up more than 5 points.
The weaknesses of the 2016 Ferrari
During the season, the four-time world champion had often played down the situation. Before the final, there were clear words for the first time: “This year, we lacked downforce in comparison to our biggest competitors. We made great progress compared to the beginning of the season, but of course we're not where we want to be, ”admitted the driver.
The competition also has advantages when it comes to the engine. “This is especially true for qualifying. Since Mercedes apparently has a trick, how they can still squeeze out a little more extra power than the others, ”Vettel analyzes. “As a third negative point, it can be noted that we often had problems getting the tires into the working window. But when the car produces more downforce, it's easier for the tires too. They are interrelated. ”
Vettel didn't just list negative points. There was praise especially for the team: “Our strength is the team spirit. We have received a lot of criticism this year, but we have continued to work hard. Everyone is fully motivated at work. ”Vettel regretted that his team was not rewarded for the effort. “We have often been beaten below value. The circumstances just weren't always right, 'the pilot shrugged his shoulders apologetically.
Vettel sees regulation change as an opportunity for Ferrari
Overall, the season was disappointing, the German admitted: “We cannot be proud of the year. We started the season with the aim of winning the world title. We didn't make it. We weren't as strong as we would have liked. It was difficult for us to close the gap quickly. There was just a little lack of speed. '
Nevertheless, the goal of the World Championship title for 2017 is still there:' We have changed a lot for the better within the team. So we should be stronger next year. The new regulations also offer good opportunitiesfor everyone who has to catch up. The cars are changing a lot. There is a chance to take bigger steps forward than the others. It starts again from zero. '
High point Monza, low point Bahrain
Before the final in Abu Dhabi, Vettel looked again at high and low points in 2016.' The highlight was probably that Podium in Monza. That is always something special. I've won there a couple of times in the past, but I noticed last year that it's something unique to be up there as a Ferrari driver. It was also nice to see that the Tifosi had come en masse despite the criticism. That gave us a real boost again. When you go through difficult times, you know that you are not alone. '
' But there were a few moments that weren't so great. The blown tire on the straight in Austria on the way to the podium, for example. The worst moment, however, was the engine burst in Bahrain when I didn't even make it to the starting position. I think we would have been very strong in the race back then. But we will unfortunately never find out now. That was probably the low point of the year. “