Ferrari hit with double blow as similar Lewis Hamilton issues raised

Ferrari have been plagued with two issues on the opening morning of pre-season testing in Bahrain including problems which plagued Lewis Hamilton last year. Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari was spotted porpoising around turn 12, raising fears the team could be battling the issue in 2023.

Former Mercedes test driver Anthony Davidson raised the issue after cameras zoomed in on the back of the Prancing Horse’s new car. The ex-F1 star noticed “an awful lot of porpoising” and gave a reason why the bouncing has returned.

He added: “Maybe they are just starting to sneak the car down. You see the bouncing through turn 12. Sparking away there at the rear. They are starting to test things by dropping the car lower and lower. Porpoising, bouncing hasn’t gone away this year.

“It will always be a problem, with a ground effects car it will also be a problem.” Mercedes and Hamilton struggled with porpoising last season with the seven-time champion complaining of severe back pains in Azerbaijan.

However, the FIA have since changed the rules with ride heights raised by 15mm for 2023. The bouncing was not the Scuderia’s only issue across the opening session with a bizarre front nose “dimple” appearing early on.

The issue was spotted on Sainz’s car as he drove at speed down the front straight with Ferrari confirming they had an issue. The Italian marque has confirmed the issue was “not intended” and are expected to fix the issue.

He said: There is a dimple around the Santander logo and the Ferrari logo. So if we are looking for a name for this Ferrari apart from SF-23 in the manner that Sebastian Vettel liked to name his car, why don’t we call this one dimple?

“At speed there was a little dimple on the nose… It’s a very thin carbon fibre ply that is just giving way a little bit under aero pressure basically.

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“If you imagine it, the crash structure of the Ferrari nose cone actually goes either side of that dimple. To save weight and everything else it’s hollow in the middle and that’s why there’s a little bit of give in the carbon fibre and it’s getting that dimple.”

Ferrari announced major changes to their strategy team this morning with target boss Ianki Rueda moving to a factory role for 2023. Ravin Jain will take over in the role for the new campaign in Frederic Vassseur’s first restructuring since taking over as team principal.

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