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Ferrari

Andretti backs Ferrari title push: 'They can compete with anyone'

The 1978 world champion is sure his former team can mount a title bid having been impressed by what he saw in Australia.

Sainz Leclerc Australia
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To news overview © XPBimages

Mario Andretti has backed Ferrari's Formula 1 title bid, believing that its performance in the Australian Grand Prix showed it can "compete with anyone."

Carlos Sainz impressed throughout the Melbourne weekend with a front-row slot in qualifying before passing Max Verstappen for the lead and going onto post a dominant victory from team-mate Charles Leclerc.

Over the winter, Ferrari has made a step forward with the SF-24 to break clear from the field and firmly establish itself as the second-best team behind Red Bull.

In both races held prior to Australia, Ferrari bagged a podium in each behind a Red Bull one-two, but was able to capitalise on a messy weekend for Red Bull with a first one-two finish since the 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix.

The performance showed by the team at Albert Park leads Andretti to believe the Scuderia could challenge for the championship.

Andretti on Ferrari

"A result like this is not just a one-off, in practice and qualifying, Ferrari was already fast [in Melbourne]," Andretti told Gazzetta della Sport.

"They did everything right from Friday and it was nice to see Carlos at 100% after the operation, they can compete with anyone.

"I've always said that both [Sainz] and Leclerc are drivers who can take wins and championships.

"They both from world championship material, we have seen that again now in Australia and we will continue to see that in the future.

"Ferrari has moved closer. It will be very interesting to see the remainder of the season, but I have seen good signs.

"They did everything right this time with both the tyres and the strategy, those were still two weaker points within the team in the past."

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