As we know, the days leading to China GP have been “shaked” by the sudden and quick decision at Ferrari’s, with the resignation of Stefano Domenicali. Sincerely, I didn’t expect he would have done such a thing so quickly and at this point of the season. Stefano is a friend and a person I regard with a special esteem: beside this, in 23 years spent at Maranello he has worked as a good manager, bringing an active contribution to the growth of the team. In order to shake things up in such a critical season, he decided to stand up for it, personally.
He will be replaced as team principal by Marco Mattiacci, who will have to face and solve many problems and issues, also speaking in terms of human resources: he’ll certainly need to reset the situation. He has never been involved in the Formula 1 World Championship, and this may be of help in taking this decision: nonetheless, the context is not easy at all, with the Chinese weekend of race – where last year Fernando Alonso triumphed – quickly approaching. Now we just have to see how the whole team will react to this changing of the guard.
The Circus is coming to Shanghai, on a track of 5,451 Km with a straight of 1,3 Km, which does not entail a particular stress on the braking system, though last year Pirelli tyres struggled with heavy greening. This year the Italian constructor will make available two types of compounds, P ZERO WHITE MEDIUM and P ZERO YELLOW SOFT, which involve a difference of more than 1’’. Therefore, strategies become very important: last year,Fernando scored a success for Ferrari with a strategy of 3 stops.
Last race in Bahrain was only 15 days ago: I don’t think there will be surprises regarding winners. I expect a great Hamilton-Rosberg fight again, especially if the team keeps leaving them “free”. It becomes interesting to see who will be able to get on the third step of the podium: the competition will be among the teams with a Mercedes engine, Force India and Williams above all. The beauty of Formula 1 is also the fact that a team with limited resources – such as Force India – can compete for a high ranking, with the goal of scoring as much points as possible.
For McLaren this is a transition year, given the change to Honda power-unit in 2015. We certainly have to keep an eye on the Red Bull of Vettel & Ricciardo, which remains the car with the best chassis: they could show their potential precisely in the mixed stretch, loosing something in the long straight. The Achilles’ heel remains the Renault power-unit and those 40 hp Horner is still asking for.
Now, let’s go to China, with the hope to see a Ferrari competing for the second place soon.