Jan 12 Fernando Alonso has credited former
McLaren man Pat Fry with bringing fresh ideas to Ferrari, even
if it is still too early to say how the new car will match up to
Formula One champions Red Bull this season.
Fry was promoted to technical director at Formula One's
oldest and most successful team in May last year after moving
from rivals McLaren, where he had worked with double world
champion Alonso in 2007, in July 2010.
Ferrari won just one race last year, with Alonso in Britain,
but hope to do much better this season after a technical
overhaul that continued on Wednesday with the arrival at
Maranello of former Bridgestone tyre development chief Hirohide
"Pat has brought new ideas, combining a different approach
to the one that Ferrari traditionally adopted towards its work,"
Alonso said in his first news conference of the year at a team
event in the Dolomites ski resort of Madonna di Campiglio.
"If we can get the most out of these various experiences it
will be very positive.
"Already last year, we began to see improvements in all
areas compared to the past, but then we stepped up a gear again
in the second half of the 2011 season, with a more efficient way
of working," he added.
Ferrari struggled in the first part of last year after the
car's performance on the track failed to match the data emerging
from the wind tunnel, which was found to be at fault.
Alonso said that problem should now have been resolved but
it would still take several races before it became clear just
how good the new car is, whatever the lap times set in
pre-season testing next month.
Ferrari will launch the car at Maranello on Feb. 3 with the
season starting in Australia on March 18.
"I don't have a crystal ball, so I don't feel I can make any
predictions," said the Spaniard when asked which team would be
Ferrari's main rivals.
"Theoretically, it will be Red Bull, but I say that based
only on the fact that for the past two years they have won both
titles. I reckon we will have to wait for at least two or three
races, which means up to Shanghai, to really understand what the
"On paper, we have everything in place to do well, but I can
be neither optimistic nor pessimistic, partly because I have
only seen the new car in the wind tunnel and from the diagrams
on the engineers' computers," said Alonso.
"I don't think there will be a big difference compared to
the other cars, because the regulations are very clear, but
there will definitely be some innovations and good technical
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Alison Wildey)