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Weather hurt Ferrari - Domenicali
Stefano Domenicali said that the cold conditions of the German Grand Prix were "the worst it could be" for Ferrari.
Fernando Alonso challenged for victory throughout the race before eventually finishing second, while Felipe Massa looked set to hold off Sebastian Vettel for fourth place before a delayed pit stop on the last lap cost him the position. Domenicali said that the result was a sign of Ferrari's progress as the cold temperatures did not suit the car's characteristics, making it difficult for the drivers to get the tyres up to working temperatures.
"A positive team result at the end of a great race, which was very exciting and in which both our drivers delivered a very good performance," Domenicali said. "The weather was the worst it could be for us and to have been in the fight for the win right to the end of the race is significant. We are working in the right direction and we have to continue like this, while realising we have to raise our performance level still further."
Domenicali added that he wanted to see Ferrari further display its competitiveness at the Hungarian Grand Prix next weekend, with Alonso the form driver at present.
"There are just a few hours to pause for breath before immediately turning our attention to the next round in Budapest, where we would like to confirm all the progress we have seen to date, while remaining well aware that we are up some very strong opposition. It's not by chance that Fernando has scored more points in the last three races than any other driver and the team has done best in the last two. It means we are pushing as hard as possible and we believe in what we are doing, without ever giving up in our efforts."
The delay during Massa's pit stop whcih cost him fourth place was down to a sticking wheel nut, and technical director Pat Fry admitted it was a specific area that Ferrari needs to address.
"Fernando and Felipe both drove great races," Fry said. "Felipe lost time at the start behind a Mercedes, which are very quick in a straight line and then he lost a well deserved fourth place at the final pit stop. A shame, but we know we must work a lot on certain aspects of the car like the wheel nut, which has given us problems this season."