I wonder how much Ferraris lack of success has to do with the sport moving away from where they might have excelled in the early-mid 2000 seasons. Back then, I understand that Ferrari invested more into the success than nearly any other team. They had the right team in place, the right people, right down to the right driver and of course also testing helped to perfect the winning formula and harmony of both. To some degree, there was a bruteforce method being applied to succeed in multiple areas.
Does this still work in todays climate and market when the sport has become more competitive and arguably, the cars better and closer to what is possible? As an example of that - back when the cars were more difficult and dangerous to drive, a driver could take a car places where others might not. Is this still possible now days? It might be - under very specific circumstances - like wet track conditions where some drivers excel at pushing the limit where others might not in fear of crashing or losing control. Back then when cars used to be less on rails (= less aero), the drivers resulted in a lot more variation. Then you also had the element of the car. Reliability was an area of importance, but also the way the car was driveable was a perhaps a significant factor in how a driver could extract more or less from the car he was given. Fast forward to today and with more aero and downforce, the sport safer, the cars have arguably become easier to extract performance from. In todays F1, the best drivers in the same car are probably separated by tenths, if not hundreths of a second, whereas if you'd force them to drive an F1 car from the 90ties, those very same drivers would probably be separated by a larger margin, just as they are today when you introduce the element of rain or unpredictable circumstances.
Then there is also the point that Ferrari is quite far away. There is obviously a pool of talent moving around F1, but how many are willing to pursue a career in Italy when all the other teams (bar one or two) are in the UK. I think I remember reading that one of the reasons why Newey could never be persuaded to go to Ferrari was due to location.
Anyway, what does Ferrari need to do to succeed? FactsOnly pointed it out - they need to be ahead of the curve. They seem to much to be in a reactive state - always a step behind. And I wonder how much has to do with the mentality. The pressure is immense to succeed on some level and maybe, just maybe, that is also hampering them in performing at their best? Fear of failure?
Not for nothing, Rosberg's Championship is the only thing that lends credibility to Hamilton's recent success. Otherwise, he'd just be the guy who's had the best car. — bhall II