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Ferrari and Ducati: so close geographically, so distant in terms of results

In this 2023 motorsport year, the difference in performance of the two Italian men in red cannot fail to impress. Why is the F1 team unable to recover, while the MotoGP team wins easily? It's a question of method and tranquillity.

Auto - News: Ferrari and Ducati: so close geographically, so distant in terms of results

Ferrari will come to the Monza GP scheduled for this weekend lying fourth in the standings with 201 points against Red Bull's 540. An impressive gap that perfectly illustrates the trend of a 2023 season which was announced as the one of recovery and redemption after a difficult period, and which on the contrary is proving to be yet another flop.

Data in hand, after 13 GPs, the Reds have only stepped onto the podium three times, all with Charles Leclerc, while for some reason Carlos Sainz has never managed to find a solution. Overall, the film being played out by the team in this championship is more or less the exact replica of the previous ones. When occasions arise for scoring good results, it goes AWOL; when the track conditions are complex, it's a long way off, and in addition, there are still a lot of misunderstandings between the pit wall and the drivers that lead to failure. It is therefore clear that the team has lost its bearings. Since 2007 with Kimi Raikkonen (like Ducati which won with Stoner that year and then even until 2022!), the men in red have no longer triumphed among the drivers and among the manufacturers the situation is equally alarming, given that it has been without a triumph since 2008. Certainly not what one would expect from a manufacturer with its prestige and financial resources.

The question that everyone is asking and probably not even the protagonists know the answer to is why such a prolonged winless period has come about. Is it perhaps the fault of the numerous changes at the top and of the reshuffles in the racing team? Maybe, given that certainties began to fade with the removal of Jean Todt from the role of team manager at the end of the Iceman's winning season. It is usually said that a winning team should never be changed in its shape, but evidently this is not the case in Maranello.

In the Modena area, it’s the brand itself that must always excel, relegating the contribution of individuals to the background, at the cost of finding themselves in an impasse like the current one. Let's think instead of the opposite example represented by Red Bull which has fielded the trio of Christian Horner, Helmut Marko and the designer Adrian Newey practically from the beginning of its adventure in F1 in 2005, and which perhaps, also thanks to this continuity, is experiencing its second cycle of domination. The same goes for Mercedes, loyal to Toto Wolff even now that things are no longer going great.

Moving from four wheels to two, it is interesting to note how, unlike the Prancing Horse, Ducati, based a few kilometres away, has been able to recover from the collapse experienced after the world championship conquered in MotoGP by Casey Stoner, not even deliberately, in 2007. Of course, even there the reconstruction took its toll, just think of the engineer Filippo Preziosi, who was dismissed when the downhill was getting tougher, or the careers of two big names like Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo, marred by their inability to tame a Desmosedici up to that moment too grouchy to produce something valid and concrete. The clearly more unitary spirit and a solid leadership formed by Gigi Dall'Igna and Paolo Ciabatti, have slowly led to the factory’s reawakening.

Furthermore, it cannot be ruled out that Audi, of which the Borgo Panigale brand is a part, has not only allowed the project to be managed with greater tranquillity, as evidenced by the eight bikes fielded today in the premier class, but also to proceed with a low profile, without creating expectations and making proclamations, so every hard-earned victory on the field is not experienced as something due or taken for granted. The numbers of the current World Championship tell us that the Bologna brand stands out among the manufacturers with 354 points against KTM's 201 and in the riders’ ranking Pecco Bagnaia is rapidly heading towards his second consecutive title, followed by his teammates Jorge Martin and Marco Bezzecchi. An excessive power, which has been achieved drop by drop, but which seems almost impossible for Ferrari.

Maybe it’s all the fault of too much pressure, of very little synergy in internal politics and of the obligation to finish in front of everyone else, the result of a history lived in the spotlight and shaped in this perspective by its founder Enzo.


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