Ferrari Team Principal Frederic Vasseur doesn’t believe that Max Verstappen’s current dominance is “damaging” for Formula 1.

After its title bid collapsed dramatically last season, Ferrari was aiming to go one better this season to take its first title since 2008.

However, the Scuderia has struggled for consistency with a capricious car and has only scooped three podiums to languish fourth in the Constructors’ Championship.

But following two tough weekends, Ferrari returned to the podium in Belgium with Charles Leclerc to head into the summer break on a much more positive note.

Vasseur, though, has stressed the importance of not being reactionary to the result, citing how the compactness of the field has been responsible for Ferrari suffering fluctuations in performance throughout the first half of the year.

“I will stay very calm because we had the same meeting one week ago and we were at the end of the world because McLaren was flying and we were stupid and from one week to the other McLaren is at the back today and we are at the front,” he said.

“It means that we have to stay calm to take it easy race after race that we know that the pack is so tight that for one or two things, you can move from P2 to P11.

“It’s not the end of the season, we have a lot to do. But for sure today it’s good to finish the first part of the season on the positive tone, at least we will have two weeks off with a positive race in mind.”

Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB19. 30.07.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 13, Belgian Grand Prix, Spa Francorchamps, Belgium, Race Day.

Verstappen has now won eight races in succession, leaving him only one shy of Sebastian Vettel’s all-time F1 record.

By contrast, team-mate Sergio Perez has struggled since taking pole position in Miami at the beginning of May, having then encountered a torrid run of five consecutive rounds without a Q3 appearance.

Consequently, Perez has had to embark on several recovery drives through the field, leaving the Mexican a huge 125-points adrift of Verstappen in the Drivers’ standings.

Asked whether it was Verstappen or the Red Bull RB19 mainly making the difference to the Austrian outfit’s current unbeaten run in 2023, Vasseur said: “No, it’s quite impossible to split between driver and team or cars.

“The driver is also developing the car, is also setting up the car, that is part of the performance of the car.

“Now for sure when you see the result that race after race that there is a big difference between the two team-mates but this is not my issue, it is the issue of Red Bull.”

However, Vasseur has dismissed the notion that Verstappen’s winning streak is hurting F1’s global appeal.

Instead, the Ferrari chief insists that the Italian marque must strive to improve to provide the Dutchman and Red Bull with tougher competition in the future.

“It’s that we have to do collectively a better job,” he declared. “It’s not that Max is damaging something.

“Max is doing a fantastic job, Red Bull is doing a fantastic job and it’s just that we have to do a better job. We can’t complain about Max or Red Bull.”

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