Ferrari has launched the 2019 car it hopes can deliver its first championships in more than a decade by unveiling the SF90 in Italy.
While Ferrari’s last drivers’ title came in 2007 courtesy of Kimi Raikkonen and constructors’ championship a year later, the team has been the closest challenger to Mercedes over the past two seasons. With last year’s car the fastest on the grid at a number of races, new team principal Mattia Binotto says the SF90 is an evolution of that design.
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“Starting in 2018, we got really good achievements and it’s a development of last year’s car, it’s not a revolution,” Binotto said. “I think we simply tried to push again to raise the bar, to raise the level, try to be as extreme a we could. Obviously there are a few changes which are straightforward — there is the front wing that for technical regulations has changed since last time.
“But I think if you look at it in all the details, certainly we tried to push very hard. The roll hoop is very narrow and very slim. If you look as well at the bodywork on the back it’s very, very slim. That is thanks to the entire job — which you cannot see because it’s below — in terms of power unit installation, packaging… A lot of effort has been done and I think the final shape is the result of all this effort. We like it.”
As Binotto highlights, all teams are adapting to regulation changes that impact the front wing, brake ducts, bargeboards and rear wing, and the Ferrari follows a similar concept to the Alfa Romeo seen on Thursday, with the front wing elements reducing in size toward the endplate.
Ferrari is set to carry out a filming day and shakedown of the SF90 on Sunday at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, but Binotto admits there is plenty of work still ongoing behind the scenes.
“The season starts with testing in a week’s time, and Australia in 27 days, so there’s still plenty of time. We are not ready yet but there is still time left to do intensive hard work, and we are all focused and very excited to start.”