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Ferrari needs to fix 'psychological problems' and 'culture of pressure' : PlanetF1

Former Ferrari spokesman Alberto Antonini believes the Scuderia needs to completely overhaul its culture to allow employees to work without fear.

Antonini, who was Ferrari’s head press officer from 2015 to 2019, says the Scuderia is struggling to match Mercedes and Red Bull despite having one of the fastest cars in F1. and expressed his opinion on what he thought.

Despite starting from 2nd and 3rd, neither Carlos Sainz nor Charles Leclerc managed to finish on the podium as a result of Ferrari’s strategy in Hungary heading into the summer break. This was in stark contrast to Red Bull, who won the race from 10th on the grid with Max Verstappen.

Ferrari has again lost the title to its rivals for operational reasons rather than being overwhelmed by other cars, which has led to widespread criticism.

Antonini appeared in an episode of the GoF1 show presented by the host Matthew Marshhe talked about Sebastian Vettel’s time with the team and how the four-time former world champion ‘annoyed’ the Scuderia for presenting a methodology he had brought over from Red Bull.

He also talks about the culture within the team, especially the strategic department, which has proven to be the main weakness of the Italian national team in recent years, and that it’s simply a matter of “too many cooks ruining the soup”. I commented that this is the case.

Antonini: Ferrari need to overcome mental block

“If we talk about strategy, I would rather talk about tactics, because I want to emphasize the main points, the differences,” said Antonini.

“Tactics is probably something you apply on a small scale. Tactics is fighting, strategy is war. You have to refine the process. In my personal opinion, I’m not an expert on this. I’d like to see it slimmed down in some way.At the moment there are probably too many people in the Ferrari wall and in the garage away from it.So many people have their own thoughts but no one actually makes the final decision.

“This was the situation [in Hungary] Quick response and flexibility were required. My feeling was that the team lacked this much-needed flexibility.

“They have to overcome some kind of psychological problem, block if you want. With a very fast car it doesn’t make sense to just copy Verstappen’s race. I should have tried it and it could probably be better.

“It’s acceptable that they didn’t win, but the cars were really down in terms of performance towards the end of the race and this also needs to be investigated. It’s a shame that Charles finished sixth, which is unthinkable and shouldn’t happen.

“They need to rethink, refine and streamline their decision-making processes because they need more flexibility and responsiveness to real-world situations.”

“Competent” people need to be “safe”

Antonini said those in key positions at Ferrari are all very good at what they do but live in a culture of fear.

He pointed to the Scuderia’s disregard for the weather conditions in front of them during the 2018 title fight between Vettel and Lewis Hamilton.

“Remember Suzuka in 2018?” he said. “We went out in the wet, but it’s dry. It was an embarrassing moment for me too, because I had to explain why.

“It really puzzled me then, and it still puzzles me, because someone from the Scuderia people always comes up afterwards and says, ‘I think we made the right decision and if given the chance, I would do it again. I’ll do it”.

“It irritates me a little bit, to be honest. It’s probably a cultural issue.

“So they don’t have to be under pressure to do anything. You have to start realizing that it doesn’t happen with other teams.

“If you feel safe where you work, you’ll probably do a better job. I think that works for any company – it’s no secret.”