Sky Sport Germany editor Udo Hutflotz has warned Ferrari that they have got to get themselves together in the coming races if they are to avoid Red Bull running away with the championship.
Charles Leclerc won two of the opening three rounds of the season in Bahrain and Australia, as Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez suffered three reliability failures between them in that time, but Red Bull have completely turned the tables since then.
Verstappen and Perez have won each of the last five races, while Leclerc has failed to convert his last four pole positions, losing race wins due to strategic errors, reliability failures and superior pace from the Milton Keynes side.
The latest calamity took place last weekend in Baku, when both Leclerc, who was leading, and Carlos Sainz retired from the race, leaving Red Bull to take their third one-two of the season.
The Austrian outfit lead the Scuderia by 80 points in the Constructors’ Championship, while Leclerc has fallen 34 points behind the reigning champion in the drivers’ battle.
There are still 14 rounds to go so nothing is decided yet, but Hutflotz warns that it will be if the Maranello side do not sort themselves out.
“The Monegasque and Scuderia Ferrari experienced a fiasco in Baku,” he said in his column.
“Three grands prix ago, Ferrari were still leading the Constructors’ Championship ahead of Red Bull. Now the Scuderia are 80 points behind Verstappen & co.
“Ferrari have been hit by a rapidly spinning downward spiral that must be ended as soon as possible.
“Otherwise, the Scuderia are in danger of losing the championship in the coming weeks. Accordingly, the [drivers] are also tense.”
In Spain, Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu suffered a failure along with Leclerc, before team-mate Valtteri Bottas was ruled out of the first practice session in Monaco along with Mick Schumacher because of MGU-K troubles.
Kevin Magnussen retired from the race when he had a water leak in his ERS system, before the Dane, Zhou, Leclerc and Sainz all retired from the race in Baku.
Overall, there have been a total if 10 failures in the last three races, so Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto is naturally a little worried, but he refuses to go into panic mode yet.
“Certainly, it’s a concern,” he conceded after the race.
“I think we said it even before coming here to Baku, reliability is always a factor which is a key factor in the battle, as [is] the performance.
“I think as a team we pushed certainly a lot through the winter last year to develop the car.
“We proved that we are not yet fully reliable, there is some work still to be done but as I think we didn’t get euphoric at the start of the season, we will not be devastated right now.
“I think the team will still focus, working hard [to] try to address those issues to make us simply stronger for the future.”
Sunday’s race was the first time this year that no Ferrari-powered cars have scored points.