Autosport (UK)

Ferrari reveals its F1 plans – and, finally, a Le Mans return

- Kevin.turner@autosport.com

There’s little doubt that Ferrari was the on-track disaster story of Formula 1 in 2020. From being Mercedes’ main rival and winning three races (which could have been more) in 2019, the famous

Italian team slumped to sixth in the constructo­rs’ championsh­ip.

The reasons for that – the fallout from the engine controvers­y, a draggy car and Sebastian Vettel’s troubles – are well known, but solving them is rather harder. As Alex Kalinaucka­s explains on page 22, Mattia Binotto seems confident that the key problems have been solved. Ferrari won’t defeat Mercedes this season but, if it can recover to third in the constructo­rs’ table while focusing on the new regulation­s due to arrive in 2022, it should give Charles Leclerc, Carlos Sainz Jr and fans some reasons to be cheerful.

Probably even more exciting for enthusiast­s, though, is that Ferrari is returning to the top class of the Le Mans 24 Hours (p4). Despite not having run a factory assault for outright honours since 1973, Ferrari is still third on the all-time wins list, behind Porsche and Audi, on nine (including 1964, above). That it will now take on those two, as well as Peugeot, Toyota and others, from 2023 is a huge boost for sportscar racing and motorsport as a whole. Many fans have been waiting for this moment for many years – perhaps other big names such as Mclaren could be persuaded to join in too…

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