Mattia Binotto says he’s not prioritising fixing Ferrari’s mistakes

Charles Leclerc finished third, with Carlos Sainz eighth in the Netherlands after Ferrari struggled for pace.

Ferrari team principal, Mattia Binotto, is more focused on improving the pace of the F1-75 than he is on addressing the mistakes made by his team during the Dutch Grand Prix.

Carlos Sainz started the race in Zandvoort third behind Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc, and pitted before then in a bid to deny Sir Lewis Hamilton the undercut behind.

However, the call to bring the Spaniard into the pits was a late one, and it caused confusion among the mechanics, one of whom did not know where they were going.

They ended on at the right front corner when they needed to be on the left rear, so they had to navigate their way round the other mechanics to get to their spot.

READ: Charles Leclerc admits Ferrari ‘disappointment’ as he makes admission

Sainz had been in the pits for over 20 seconds by the time he was released from his pit box, by which time he had been jumped by Sergio Perez, as well as both Mercedes of Hamilton and George Russell.

Later on in the race, the 27-year-old was caught out by an unsafe release after he had to slow to avoid the McLaren mechanics while they were servicing Lando Norris.

This took him into the path of Fernando Alonso, earning him a five-second penalty.

Though Sainz came home P5 ahead of Perez following a late Safety Car, during which he got his penalty, the British Grand Prix winner finished eighth in the final classification.

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Charles Leclerc was caught out by a Virtual Safety Car, allowing Verstappen and both Mercedes a cheap stop to remain ahead of him, but he could not pass Russell at the end.

The Silver Arrows showed tremendous race pace again in the Netherlands, while Red Bull had Ferrari’s number at a track that was expected to suit the Scuderia.

This came after an extremely tight qualifying, so the Scuderia need to understand where their pace is going between Saturday and Sunday.

“If you look at the quali pace of yesterday, we were hoping for a better result today,” said Binotto, quoted by

“But the speed and the performance today was not great for all the race long, especially on the medium and the hards, which is something that has somehow affected our result.

“A bit unlucky maybe with Charles at the pit stop under the Safety Car because he just pitted, but I don’t think that would have been enough.

“So simply not as good in terms of now it’s three races in a row [in which Ferrari have dropped points], from Hungary, from Spa, here, so I think we are not exploiting maybe the full potential of the car, there is something wrong that we need to address.”

Despite a strategic blunder that sent Leclerc from first to sixth in Budapest, the Maranello-based team did not have the pace they were expecting at the Hungarian Grand Prix either.

Having looked at the start of the season as though they had the best car on the grid, Ferrari are now behind Red Bull on pace, with Mercedes breathing down their necks as well.

“In Hungary we were not quick enough and maybe we need to simply to review our packages that we introduced, or maybe in the way that we are balancing our car today,” explained Binotto.

“I think that the potential of the car can be high, it has proved to be higher since the beginning of the season, but right now it is not the case anymore.”

Sainz’s stop is the latest of a number of Ferrari fumbles in 2022, Budapest being one of them.

Points were haemorrhaged in Monaco, Silverstone and Spa too, while more valuable points fell at the wayside due to reliability failures in Spain, Azerbaijan and Austria.

Each mistake accumulates more scrutiny on Binotto’s team, and the boss was keen to take the attention away from his pit crew, and turn it to the raw pace of the car.

“I think if I look at today, simply the call was too late a call, so we had no time to react, all these things need to be fixed, but these ones are the easiest to be fixed,” said the Italian.

“So at the end, they happened; they should not happen, I’m pretty sure that we can be stronger in the future, so I’m less concerned by that than the pace of the car.”

There is pressure on Ferrari going into their home race in Monza this weekend in front of their expectant fans, but the 52-year-old is looking forward to the atmosphere.

“Now we go to Monza where we can expect a warm welcome from our tifosi, we know we can always count on their support,” said Binotto

“And it will be great to finally see the grandstands at the Autodromo packed out, after the limitation on spectator numbers last year because of Covid.

READ: ‘It is so bad’: Charles Leclerc reacts to Carlos Sainz unsafe release

“We will do our utmost to make our supporters proud of us, even if we already know it won’t be an easy race, given the performance level of our competitors.”

Verstappen went on to win his home race on Sunday, extending his lead over Leclerc to 109 points in the Drivers’ Standings.

Leclerc would end the race third behind Russell, with Perez behind Hamilton in fifth, helping Red Bull to a 135-point advantage over Ferrari in the Constructors’ Standings.