Ferrari’s rivals are copying its design elements according to Sebastian Vettel, and he says it is a good sign.
The Italian team has come up with an efficient and powerful car for the current season, the SF70H that is challenging Mercedes to win the constructor’s championship and has already put Vettel ahead of Hamilton in the drivers’ standings.
The two teams have been going head to head in each race with Ferrari at the top of the list at summer break.
“It’s a fact to say in the last couple of years we didn’t have the best car and it’s a fact to say in the last couple of years we weren’t the strongest in terms of developing the car,” Vettel said.
“This year, if you look at the last three years, this year is a different story and we keep progressing. We have brought a lot of bits, we have seen a lot of bits of people copying ours but that’s a good sign.
“It’s testimony of good and hard work and the achievement that has gone into this project and we keep pushing flat-out.”
The four-time world champion believes that Ferrari has “quite a good understanding” of what they need to improve in their car to keep ahead in the race.
“We’ve been competitive every track where we have went,” says Vettel. “It’s true that Mercedes has here and there been more competitive and we were a little bit behind.
“It’s normal from track to track there is a bit of a difference. For drivers, some tracks we like more than others so it’s the same for the car.
“It’s normal it’s up and down but that’s not our target – we want to be the best on every track we go. That’s not the case yet but we’re working on it.
“We have quite a good understanding of what the car needs. Now we have the time to look into a couple of things with a bit more peace and calm and try to improve.”
The team’s one–two finish at Hungary GP gave Ferrari a 39 point lead over Mercedes and Vettel got a 14 point lead over arch rival Lewis Hamilton. With nine more races to the end of Season, Vettel is confident Ferrari has the team to win the championship.
“The team is in much better shape this year and if you have the right results coming your way, you start to pick up some moment,” he said. “It’s up to us to keep it going. I’m quite confident we have the right people.
“We know how to build a strong car and we have improved the engine this year massively so everything is going in the right direction. I’m confident we’ll be there and fight for big points.”