Ferrari’s ‘year of tension’ explained as Mattia Binotto to be sacked

Ferrari will be looking to fend off Mercedes for second place in the constructor’s championship in Abu Dhabi.

Ferrari looked certain to end their years of underperformance in 2022, as the team flew out of the blocks to secure a one-two finish at the season opener in Bahrain, as Mercedes looked far off of the pace and Red Bull struggled with reliability issues.

Since then the team have taken themselves out of the title race, allowing Red Bull to storm to both championships as the Scuderia struggled with strategy errors and mechanical failures.

2022 has been described as a year of tension, as decisions made by the team have confused fans and frustrated their drivers, resulting in a divided fanbase.

The tension began in Silverstone as Carlos Sainz secured his first pole position in mixed conditions, ahead of championship rivals Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen.

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The team appeared to make a short-sighted decision to prioritise Sainz in the race, as they chose to pit the Spaniard during a late safety car for soft tyres so he could secure his maiden win, instead of picking Leclerc who desperately needed the win to stay in with a chance of competing with Verstappen for the championship.

Leclerc was understandably annoyed at his team’s decision but then went on to win at Red Bull Ring, which was a sweet victory for the Monegasque driver, however Sainz was once again forced to retire due to a mechanical fire, which sparked his frustrations at his never ending bad luck.

Just when the Scuderia seemed to have solved their communication and decision making problems, the team decided to pit their drivers for the hard tyres in Hungary, despite data from other drivers clearly suggesting that they were a poor race tyre, much to the annoyance of both their drivers.

At this point the team had become an internet joke for their ability to shoot themselves in the foot, which was not helped by their decision to pit Leclerc in Spa for the fastest lap, which saw him overtaken by Fernando Alonso.

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Now with only one race to go the gap to Mercedes in the constructors’ championship has been cut to only 19 points following the Silver Arrow’s one-two finish in Brazil, which has caused Sainz to suggest that his team need to aim for a one-two finish of their own in Abu Dhabi to avoid the ultimate embarrassment.

Mercedes have only looked a competitive team for the past three races, so should title challenges Ferrari be overtaken at the final hurdle by their rivals, the tension in the team could reach boiling point, with many fans already calling for team principal Mattia Binotto to be sacked.

Ferrari have recently denied rumours that they plan to replace Binotto, but losing out to Mercedes could make his position untenable.