/ Motorsport

Ferrari focus on 2010 challenge

Updated: Tuesday, 14 Jul 2009 08:18

Ferrari are fully focused on next season's car
Ferrari are fully focused on next season's car

Ferrari are ready to start throwing all their formidable resources into next year's car.

The news comes despite Felipe Massa's return to the podium in the German Grand Prix on Sunday for the first time this year.

Although the car lacks the pace of the leading Red Bulls and Brawn GPs, the team have made significant strides in recent weeks to get Massa and Kimi Raikkonen back towards the front of the grid.

But team boss Stefano Domenicali has confirmed such progress will soon be halted, with all focus due to turn to the 2010 challenger.

With a ban on refuelling from next year, it means another radical redesign is required, and Ferrari are determined that they will not be found wanting again as they were this year.

Asked as to when development will stop on this year's car, and the attention shift to next season, Domenicali replied: 'It will be very soon.

'We have already started some work on the new project, and in the next couple of weeks we will basically move on to that to make sure we do not lose any time.

'We know next season will be crucial, and we really want to start with a different pace compared to this year. So it is a matter of days rather than weeks.'

It means the Hungarian Grand Prix in 12 days' time could represent Ferrari's last realistic hope of winning a race this season.

But it comes as no surprise Ferrari are ready to change tack, with neither driver in the hunt for the title and with the team a long way adrift in the constructors' championship.

It is why Massa was quick to dismiss suggestions Ferrari were back in the wake of his third place at the Nurburgring.

'A podium is always important, and third is a good result for us, but we cannot say it's our return,' remarked Massa.

Domenicali will hope to be firmly hands-on in terms of overseeing the development of next year's Ferrari, appreciating the FIA-FOTA battle of late has been a distraction and a drain on his time.

'To be honest, I would have preferred to have been more balanced for the team,' added Domenicali.

'But it was a very critical moment for F1 and we have had to make sure we were doing our job. Being the team principal of Ferrari, with all that Ferrari means for F1, I also felt a responsibility.'

It is likely the feud will end at some stage this week, potentially next, with the aim then to restore F1's credibility.

'For the benefit of the situation in F1, we really need to close this matter as soon as possible,' insisted Domenicali. 'We need to find a new F1 that has more energy, more passion and positivity around it because that is what we need all of us.'

Powered by NewsWhip