Half a second of Ferrari's gain down to fuel - Shell

Almost half a second a lap of Ferrari's 2015 improvement was down to fuel and lubricant development alone, the Italian team's supplier has claimed.

Ferrari's competitive gains in the F1 season just ended was one of the big stories of the campaign, as the Scuderia's results were transformed from just two podium finishes and fourth place in the constructors' standings in its difficult 2014, to 16 podiums - including three wins - and runners' up spot overall this time.

According to its long-time partner Shell the improvement in fuel and lubricant alone equated to nearly half a second per lap or to around 30 seconds per race, as well as representing a quarter of Ferrari's much-vaunted total power unit gain since the previous season, a gain which it said was "unparalleled".

"It was always our plan to adopt a more aggressive strategy in 2015 with the development of our Shell V-Power race fuel in comparison to previous years," said Guy Lovett, Shell's innovation manager of motorsport.

"We really applied our learnings from 2014, a year of new and innovative hybrid technology, to our 2015 race fuel, of which we introduced five new powerful blends.

"We worked closer than ever with our colleagues in Maranello where we fully integrated our development plans to optimise the fuel-engine package and it was great to see that our hard work paid off, helping to power the team back to winning ways. Now the hard work continues ahead of 2016." 

Ferrari's Technical Director James Allison added that it all helped performance as well as reliability this season.

"2015 was a really positive year for Scuderia Ferrari and we made great strides in performance, particularly with the power unit, compared to last year" he said. "The considerable improvements Shell made...really did contribute to our own improvements on the race track, not only helping to deliver greater horsepower but reliability as well."

Allison also confirmed that Ferrari with Shell is aiming for titles in future seasons: "Our Technical Partnership with Shell has never been stronger and we look forward to continuing our work with them for at least the next five years with the aim of winning more races and championships."