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Ferrari gives itself '6 out of 10' for 2013 so far
Ferrari chief designer Nikolas Tombazis has given his team's performance this year just "6 out of 10" but is optimistic it will still be in the fight for the championship.
Ferrari is third in the constructors' championship and Fernando Alonso is fourth in the drivers' championship after a mixed start to the year. Alonso won in China but crashed out with a broken front wing in Malaysia and struggled to eighth in Bahrain after a DRS glitch.
"I think in general, the first results mean we can be reasonably optimistic about the rest of the season, with a sense that we can fight for wins and the championship," Tombazis told Ferrari's official website. "However, if I was to score our overall performance, I would only give it a 6 out of 10 and that's for two main reasons: one is that we are not yet quite where we want to be. In the first four grands prix, we were not really able to fight for pole position and that is one of our main objectives at the moment. Secondly, if you look at the actual results, even if it's true we've had a win, which naturally we can be very pleased about, we have also had two very bad results where we scored very few points. However, I reiterate, that overall, we can be optimistic for the future."
Tombazis expects circuit characteristics and track temperature to dictate the competitiveness of cars at the upcoming races, but is hopeful Ferrari will capitalise when it is strong.
"The variability of weather conditions as well as the different characteristics of the four tracks we have raced on so far has enabled us to gauge our relative strengths and weaknesses compared to our competitors," he said. "We have seen that we have been stronger in certain conditions, both in terms of track type and weather, than in others -this includes looking at the type of corners, whether a circuit involves heavy braking and other similar parameters.
"Overall, depending on the circuit, some of these strengths and weaknesses will be highlighted and therefore, based on what we have seen so far, we do not expect a constant performance level over the next few races, but rather we do expect to be reasonably competitive in most conditions."