Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto says the manufacturer took a risk in introducing updated engine components as it continue to understand its power unit.
Ferrari introduced upgraded components into Charles Leclerc’s SF21 in Russia and followed it up by also equipping Carlos Sainz’s car with the latest parts in Turkey.
Ferrari is still focusing the majority of its resources on its project for 2022, when widespread regulation changes will be introduced, with the manufacturer also eyeing a step with a new power unit.
Binotto says Ferrari pushed to introduce the updated components as soon as possible in order to maximise its track running ahead of next season.
“As we said at the very start with Charles, when we introduced it in Sochi, the first objective is try to increase our experience in the view of 2022,” Binotto explained.
“That’s why we introduced it as soon as possible, trying to rush it, and taking some risks as well, but it’s all a risk assessment.
“Because obviously for us it’s key to get mileage on-track and do our own experience before a 2022 where the power units somehow will be frozen. That’s really for us, that was the key and the reason of it.”
Ferrari has been encouraged by early feedback but Binotto was reluctant to put a definitive lap time gain on the update.
“It is giving us a small advantage; I don’t want to quantify it on lap time because it is track dependent,” he said.
It’s not only pure – let me say – ICE power, it is energy recovery, so it’s a bit complex. But certainly it’s giving us an advantage.
“If I look as well at the quali with Charles, it was in qualifying with the fourth [best] lap time, if I look behind him, I see it was very close, and I’m pretty sure that a couple of positions would have been lost without that specification.”