Ferrari bring major upgrades to Baku amid Charles Leclerc Mercedes rumours

Ferrari's best result this season so far is fourth at the Bahrain Grand Prix.

After showing so much promise on their way to second in the Constructors’ Championship last season, Ferrari have started the 2023 F1 season woefully, with the Italians currently sitting fourth in the standings.

Whilst the side have seemingly gotten on top of their strategic mishaps that were so costly in 2022, power unit reliability continues to be a pressing concern for the Maranello-based team, and for Charles Leclerc in particular.

The 2022 runner-up has endured a miserable start to the year, with him having retired in Bahrain following a power unit failure, before finishing a disappointing seventh in Saudi Arabia, only to then retire on the opening lap in Australia.

As a result, Leclerc is on the verge of being in the bottom half of the Drivers’ Championship, with the Monegasque needing a strong Azerbaijan Grand Prix to kickstart his campaign.

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Things have started slightly better for Carlos Sainz, with the Spaniard having finished fourth in Bahrain, sixth in Saudi Arabia and P12 in Australia; however, he would’ve finished fourth again had it not been for a five-second time penalty.

Ferrari’s biggest issue, though, is the lack of pace being generated by the SF-23, something the team are working tirelessly to fix.

It’s been reported by Italian publication Gazzetta that the Italians have trialled eight different set-ups ahead of next weekend’s fourth round, with that not even being half of what they’ve been trialling.

According to Gazzetta, Ferrari have been testing improvements to ‘aerodynamic configurations, suspension set-ups and power unit modes’ in a bid to compete with the likes of Aston Martin and Mercedes at the Baku City Circuit.

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The Italians have also reportedly been testing upgrades to the rear wing and to the front wing flaps, whilst three different suspension configurations have also been trialled.

The report certainly shows that Ferrari are working around the clock to try and find some performance from SF-23, with a big upgrade also set to be introduced at their home race in Imola.

They still have Azerbaijan and Miami to get through before they can introduce their major upgrade, which they hope will see them be at least the second fastest team on the grid once again.