Mercedes’ Toto Wolff and Red Bull’s Christian Horner agree on Ferrari ahead of 2022 season

Max Verstappen prevails in world title shoot-out

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Mercedes boss Toto Wolff and his Red Bull counterpart Christian Horner believe Ferrari could challenge for the Constructors’ Championship this year if they get their car developments right over the winter break. Ferrari finished third in the team standings in 2021 after finishing sixth the season before.

Mercedes and Red Bull dominated the Constructors’ Championship last year as the two teams battled to take top spot.

The Silver Arrows eventually won the contest after racking-up 28 more points than their rivals.

That was despite the fact Lewis Hamilton was beaten to the Drivers’ Championship by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

Ferrari saw a huge improvement last season after enduring a miserable few years in the midfield.

The Italian team have been targeting the 2022 season for some time and preparing their cars for this year’s contest.

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The F1 regulations will change significantly for the upcoming season and teams are creating new car designs.

Ferrari also possess two hungry young drivers, Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc, who have illustrated their exceptional abilities on the track.

And if Ferrari have a car which can compete during 2022, F1 fans could be set for a mouthwatering season ahead.

Red Bull could face a race against time to make the decisive changes needed to challenge for the championship after previously focussing their efforts on helping Verstappen secure his maiden F1 title.

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And Horner admits teams won’t know how their rivals are shaping up until the season gets underway.

“When Ferrari turn up with the fastest car and smash us out of the park at the first race then you’ll have to say that it probably did [compromise us],” Horner said.

“But I think that we’ve all known that big regulation changes are coming for 2022 and we’ve applied our resource accordingly.

“[The cars] look different, they’re going to feel different, they’re going to drive differently. Who’s got it right, who’s got it wrong? It all starts again.”

The changes are set to decrease the amount of downforce cars can generate, which will make them harder to control, while allowing drivers to follow one another more closely.

F1 chiefs will also look to close the gap between the top and bottom teams by allowing those who finished lower in the standings last season more aerodynamic runs in the wind tunnel during the winter.

And Wolff thinks teams who haven’t competed in the past could suddenly become a competitive F1 force.

“It’s pretty much possible that teams who hadn’t competed for the world championship this year – whether it’s Ferrari, McLaren or Aston Martin or Alpine – are capable of coming up with the intelligent concepts based on much more runs than everybody else and just doing it very right,” Wolff insisted.

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