After a very disappointing few rounds, Scuderia Ferrari ended the year very respectfully at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, where for the first-time since the Japanese Grand Prix the Italians had the second best package on the grid.
It’s been a bit touch and go for Ferrari in their fight with the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team over the last few rounds, with the Germans having been incredibly competitive in the season’s close. However, Mercedes weren’t with it at the Yas Marina Circuit, whilst Ferrari produced impressive pace.
After locking out the second row, Charles Leclerc found himself in third for the majority of the race, before tricking Sergio Pérez into making a second pit-stop. Once Checo pitted for a second time, Leclerc inherited second spot after opting to end the race on a one-stop, like race winner Max Verstappen. The result claimed the Monegasque driver second in the Constructors’ Championship, demonstrating some great progression.
Carlos Sainz Jr endured a tough start to the race following a duel with Lewis Hamilton; however, the British driver fell right off the pace which allowed the Spaniard to claima a safe fourth place finish. The result meant Sainz claimed fifth in the standings, matching his 2021 position.
With Mercedes having struggled, Ferrari in the end claimed second with ease, marking their best Constructors’ result in years. Ferrari Team Principal Mattia Binotto labelled 2022 as an “important year”, but admitted that should the Scuderia “want to win the titles” then they still have a “lot of work to do”.
“Second place in the Constructors’ and Drivers’ championships is down to all the hard work over the course of the season. This has been an important year, in which we had set ourselves the goal of getting back to being competitive and, in that, we have succeeded. However, we know, if we want to win the titles, there is still a lot of work to do.
“I congratulate the entire team, drivers, engineers, mechanics, here in Abu Dhabi and all those back home in Maranello, because they were able to stay focussed on our goals for this weekend. The season had its difficult moments, but overall it has been significant.
“We can put 2022 behind us knowing that we made a lot of progress and, as from Tuesday, we will start preparing for the new challenge that awaits us in 2023. I want to thank our fans for their unwavering support this season. Thank you also to Sebastian for everything he has given to Formula 1 and to Ferrari.”