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Ferrari has 'mega room for improvement' as it brings upgrades to Jeddah

Frederic Vasseur is confident that the team can reduce the gap to Red Bull, expecting Jeddah to be a "different story" to Bahrain.

Ferrari will bring its first upgrades to the SF-23 at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix according to Team Principal Frederic Vasseur, as it tries to close the gap to Red Bull. The team comes into the race at Jeddah having exhibited high straight-line speed at Bahrain during qualifying, with the SF-23 being quicker on the straights than the RB19. Carlos Sainz was the sole driver to complete the race for the team, complaining of high tyre degradation at the end of that race stopping them from challenging the leader - a trait that has carried over from the F1-75 last year. But with the Jeddah Corniche Circuit being a track that places a lot of emphasis on straight-line speed, Vasseur expects it to be a "different story" and to suit their car a lot more. "The characteristic of Jeddah is completely different compared to the previous one in Bahrain, in terms of grip and the layout of the track, [which mean] it's a completely different story," he told media, including RacingNews365.com . "Probably it will swing a little bit more to what we have today. We'll also bring some some updates in Jeddah and I hope that we do step forward."

Ferrari has confidence in car concept

The team comes into the weekend already playing catch up as Charles Leclerc is set to take a grid penalty off the back of his retirement from a podium. Senior members of the design team have also departed after a disappointing start to the season, but Vasseur still has confidence in the car concept and believes there is "mega room" for improvements. "For me it's a problem of performance, it's not a problem of concept. Now we have the car that we have and we struggled a bit with the balance over the weekend," he added. "It means that we have mega room for improvements on this path with our car and our package. I don't want to speak about updates or new parts, but with Bahrain I think we had a lot of room for improvements in terms of drivability." Vasseur pointed out that the 'drivability' part of his comments refer to making the car easier to drive for both Sainz and Leclerc, as opposed to it referring to their engine package. He added that the team needs to understand how the car performs on more than one track, before they come to any conclusions on their car concept. "The most important thing is to stay focused on the current situation to try to get the best from what we have today," he said. "Even if we are bringing updates and we will improve the situation and the competitiveness of the package. "But keep in mind that Bahrain is not always representative. We are still at the early stage of the car, we only did three days of testing on one track and we need to have a better understanding of the of the car itself to try to get the best from the package."

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