Ferrari installed the most-anticipated evolved power unit at the back of Charles Leclerc’s car last weekend at Sochi. The on-track result indeed was topsy-turvy, with Carlos Sainz securing a podium while his teammate, with a much superior car ending up further back in P15.
But, part of the credit for this mix-up goes to the weather. But, the pace difference was very much evident on Friday through FP1 and FP2, where the Monegasque was constantly keeping up with the front-runners.
According to Michael Schmidt of Auto Motor Und Sport, Ferrari’s experiment with the new engine has proven to be successful. The evolved power unit managed to bring about an extra juice of 10 to 15 hp, which was initially the target.
Hence, it is imminent that Sainz, too, will be getting his new engine at the Istanbul Park, but of course, by paying the price of starting from the back of the grid.
“Ferrari has said the experiment was successful. The new PU has delivered what was expected. Obviously, they play it down, but they always say that. Rumors say the gain is between 10-15 hp,” the statement read.
#AMuS Michael Schmidt on the new Ferrari power unit (PU4)
"Ferrari has said the experiment was successful. The new PU has delivered what was expected. Obviously they play it down, but they always say that ()."
— tami. (@Vetteleclerc) September 28, 2021
Will Ferrari take their fight to Red Bull & Mercedes in 2022?
Ferrari encountered a tacky phase in 2020 amidst the significant drop in engine performance. The Reds fell into the mid-field pack, and it looked like Ferrari’s resurgence to the top could take years. However, it has been a sound comeback from the outfit so far this season.
Ferrari are almost at the top of the mid-field, and could well finish in the top 3 albeit the ever-present threat from McLaren. This certainly proved that Ferrari are on the right path, and could return to the winning ways sooner than expected. But, the question is, can they?
Well, they are on course to changing their combustion engine, the MGU-H, and the turbocharger next season. Hence, the chances of Ferrari joining Mercedes and Red Bull for the championship fight look quite bright. This job may have become much simpler, as their engine looks as powerful as Honda’s and Mercedes’.
Overall, it would be foolish of us to count Ferrari out of the championship battle in 2022. More changes are incoming, and more surprises are in store for the Tifosi. How big of surprises? Well, we’ll know in time.
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