SF23, An ambitious Ferrari

Will the Ferrari SF-23 be able to return to Maranello that double world title that has been missing since 2007? Benedetto Vigna, general manager, and Frédéric Vasseur, Cavallino’s new number one, have no doubts: the goal for 2023 is the world title.

To find out if this really happens, we will have to wait for some Grand Prix, but one thing is sure: the SF-23 is not a bet, a leap in the dark, but a very careful single-seater with few revolutions. Each component has been studied to avoid making the mistakes of last season and recover that leadership they had at the beginning of 2022, after some turbulent seasons.


On close inspection, the familiarities with last season’s SF-75 are apparent, but with several significant changes in each sector. This Ferrari does not deny the past and is aware of the potential, only partially expressed, of the 2022 model; the aerodynamic exaggeration of Red Bull or the extra-flat line of Mercedes does not influence it. It is committed to a rational evolution of the previous model, with two objectives: avoid the reliability issues of last season and improve performance in a straight line, reducing drag.


The nose of the SF-23 has undergone the most drastic changes: the striking pointed nose of last year has been replaced by a more conventional element, no longer attached to the central plane but to the first wing. This design, unlike the competition, frees up the entire surface area of the main airfoil and, according to Cavallino’s aerodynamics specialists, should generate more load.

Also different from last year are the two upper profiles, which slope downwards on the outside, accentuating the “outwash” effect and allowing the flows to divert to the outside of the front wheels, reducing turbulence. The SF-23’s front wing also features a series of vortex generators, like the ones Mercedes tested last year, but was not used in the race because they were deemed illegal. However, the solution adopted by Ferrari should have a different fate because the supports used are smaller to comply with the limits imposed by the regulations. Always with an aerodynamic view, the front suspension, which maintains the pushrod design, has been revised in the arrangement of the triangles. In contrast, the steering arm has been moved down and inserted into the lower triangle of the suspension, like the steering box, to further lower the car’s center of gravity.


The design of the sides follows the same line of thinking. In 2023, Cavallino’s technicians were not compelled to copy Red Bull, preferring to continue developing the solutions introduced last year on the SF-75. An attempt was made to improve the aerodynamic efficiency of the 2022 car by reducing the front section of the side pods. Let’s go in order, starting with the shape of the air intake on the sides, which are flattened, elongated, and placed even higher to accentuate the reduction at the bottom. This conformation, as you may recall, was introduced by Ferrari in 2017 (and then copied by all the teams) and allows for acceleration of the airflows on the outside of the side pods and then hit the rear. This happened in the F1-75 and the SF-23; the hot air, expelled by the radiant masses, is done through a series of open slits in the hood. In 2023, the latter were redesigned and divided into two distinct elements: the first is in the initial part of the side, and the second is near the hood. Presumably, thanks to the improved aerodynamic conformation of the SF-23, on some tracks, the rear grille could be removed and replaced by a closed fairing to improve the car’s speed performance on a straight line. To shorten the gap with Red Bull, the underbody- an essential component in the performance of a Formula 1 with ground effect- was also redesigned, eliminating the step introduced in the last French Grand Prix but maintaining the rise in the central part. Finally, as the drawing shows, the rear is characterized by an even more accentuated narrowing. At the same time, the hood adheres perfectly to the exhaust tip, forgoing hot air release through a large rear diffuser, as many competitive cars do.


Probably taking advantage of a regulatory loophole difficult to replicate by the competition, Ferrari introduced in 2023 a solution in the SF-23 that would recall the operating principle of the S-Duct, introduced in 2008 by Cavallino’s technicians in the F2008.

What is it about? Above the leading edge of the sides, a small air intake has been created to feed a channel into the inside of the side, then venting the airflow over the top of the side pods through two openings behind the halo accessory. In aerodynamic terms, this solution would not significantly reduce aerodynamic resistance since the forced path is too tortuous to obtain notable benefits. Still, it would help clean the airflow that brushes the upper part of the sides of turbulence, helping extract hot air through the cooling grills. A small gain that, if it works, will most definitely be copied by the competition in 2024.


Turning to the mechanics, in addition to the modifications in the front suspension, in the rear suspension, we find pull-rod kinematics, with no significant variations in the attachment points of the triangles, but with essential interventions in the internal components, such as springs and shock absorbers, to try to counter excessive tire wear for 2022.

Last winter, Ferrari’s car also underwent drastic slimming, approaching the minimum weight of 798kg. At the same time, new power unit reliability should give the SF-23 back all the power it had lost as a precaution in 2022. There is no need to talk about figures not communicated by Ferrari. Enrico Gualtieri, head of Cavallino’s engine area, says, “The interventions we made were mainly in the areas where we had difficulties last season. So, we focused on the internal combustion engine and the electrical part. At the same time, however, we have tried to capitalize on the experience gained on the track in 2022, so we have tried to work on all the weaknesses derived from the power unit components used.”

Red Bull double and podium for Fernando Alonso

The Red Bull team, which started from the front row of the starting grid, achieved the double in the first GP of the 2023 F1 season, with victory number 36 for Max Verstappen, followed by Checo Pérez. But the most exciting event of the race was Fernando Alonso debuting in the Aston Martin team this year, who, with his 41 years, started 5th and came in third. In addition, Alonso was the diver of the day. 


Another Spaniard, Carlos Sainz, qualified in fourth position, while his Ferrari teammate, Charles Leclerc, had to retire due to engine problems when he was third. Fifth was Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), followed by Lance Stroll (Aston Martin), George Russell (Mercedes), Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo), Pierre Gasly (Alpine) ninth despite starting last and completing the top 10, Alex Albon (Williams).


Two drivers are debuting in F1 this year: Oscar Piastri in McLaren and the American Logan Sargeant (Williams). This time will be the first Nyck de Vries (Alpha Tauri) competes in an entire season in 2023. He debuted in 2022, replacing Alex Albon in the Italian GP, who underwent appendicitis surgery.


In the grid’s first row, the two Red Bull team drivers came in first, followed by Ferrari, with Max Verstappen starting from the pole position -his 21st in F1-. 

Checo Pérez came in 2nd; Charles Leclerc 3rd, Carlos Sainz 4th; and Fernando Alonso 5th. George Russell and Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) finished 6th and 7th, respectively. 


Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari had a new control unit (CE) and battery (ES) installed before the race. 19 of the 20 drivers rode a soft kind of tire compound; only Magnussen had a set of hard ones and started 17th on the grid.


At the start, Verstappen kept his pole position, while Leclerc overtook Pérez, Sainz was still fourth, and Hamilton recovered: from 7th to 5th position. Russell overtook Alonso, pushed by his teammate Stroll in a clean hit without damages: Alonso dropped to 6th place and Stroll to 9th.


Gasly was the first driver to change tires on lap 10. On lap 13, while Hamilton went to boxes for the mandatory pit stop, Alonso overtook Russell, becoming the 5th. Leclerc, Sainz, and Russell came in a lap later, followed by Verstappen and Alonso. Stroll entered on the next lap, followed by Perez. Both Red Bull drivers rode soft tires. By then, Alonso had surpassed Bottas and was already sixth. After the pit stops, the order had changed little among the first: Verstappen, Leclerc, Pérez, Sainz, Hamilton, Alonso, and Russell.


By mid-race, the only exciting movement was the overtaking of Pérez to Leclerc. The Red Bull pilot was already 2nd behind his teammate Verstappen. When the second pit stop began, Hamilton, Stroll, Sainz, Russell, and Leclerc came in with an almost identical order, except for Stroll, who overtook Russell and was 7th behind his teammate Alonso. The Spaniard battled with Hamilton, whom he overtook, but then the Mercedes pilot returned to 5th place. One lap later, Alonso managed to overtake Hamilton.


On lap 41, something unexpected happened: Leclerc stopped on the side of the track, warning by radio: “no power, no power,” and the “virtual safety car” showed up. Some pilots took advantage of the situation to get back into the boxes. Verstappen was still leading, followed by his teammate Pérez, with Sainz 3rd, Alonso 4th, and Hamilton 5th, until Alonso stuck to the back of his compatriot’s Ferrari and overtook Sainz. Alonso moved up to third place behind the two Red Bulls. By then, Sainz’s position was in danger as Hamilton was coming very close.


Finally, Max Verstappen crossed the finish line first, followed by his teammate Checo Pérez, with the Spaniards Fernando Alonso and Carlos Sainz in third and fourth position, respectively. Fifth came to Hamilton, ahead of Stroll, Russell, Bottas, Gasly, and Albon.


The next event will be the Saudi Arabian GP from March 17 to 19.


Fernando Alonso is ready for a new leap in his sports career in F1

“I know that my time behind the wheel is not unlimited, but I will try to make this process as short as possible and help the team as much as possible.” – Fernando Alonso

Fernando Alonso is the new flagship of the Silverstone team. The Spaniard traveled from Oviedo to England on Sunday, after spending Friday and Saturday at his go-kart circuit and museum, where he was filming. On Saturday he took some time to chat with friends on the circuit, no helmet, just watching them on the track.

Fernando’s 41 years do not show, and he knows it. “I’m like 20 years old,” he says, and in truth, he’s slimmer and fitter than ever. The former Alpine rider chose Lawrence Stroll’s project because he saw the right path to success. At the end of the presentation of the new car, Fernando launched a declaration of intent that shows once again how competitive it is.

Are you happy with your decision to come here after joining the team?

“Yes, very happy and I am happier every day. Honestly, I came to the factory regularly in January. I worked on the simulator with all the pilots helping us, Stoffel (Vandoorne) and Felipe (Drugovich). They are constantly talking about the simulator and how to improve it. There is a lot of teamwork, and I like that. For the last two months, the pilots, and all departments for that matter, have been following the model in the wind tunnel. Today we finally saw the real car. I think fans will also appreciate the fact that we launched the car. Sometimes it’s disappointing to see a mockup with different decals and no real car.

What did you find in this team different from what you experienced on other teams?

“Well, I think Formula 1 is a bit different these days. We don’t have the freedom to develop the car. There are a lot of restrictions and regulations, there is less creativity. So, it’s all based on the details. It’s a matter of quality in every core aspect of our work. I think the background of this team comes from the previous names in this factory. Everyone here is humble. Everyone here is hungry for success. Maybe they haven’t had the experience of fighting regularly for wins, championships, or podiums every weekend, but they’re confident in themselves and know they can do it.

They’ve never done it, however. So, in this sense, they are very different from any other team I’ve worked with, where they’ve been successful in the past, and so they were in a comfortable position. If they came in fourth, they were happy with being fourth, and if they came in fifth, they were happy to be fifth. If they came in seventh, they would celebrate being seventh. Here we don’t celebrate until we win and that’s very attractive.”

Do you still have hopes of winning races and a third World Championship? And do you think you can do it with this team?

“I think so. Yes, it’s a possibility. I don’t think this will happen this year, I’m honest about it. I have my feet on the ground. I can’t tell anyone we will fight for wins this year because I would be lying. But at the same time, we want a good car to start with, and develop it over the course of the season. And maybe in the second half of the season, we can get closer. If there is an opportunity, conditions can change, and we won’t miss it. But at the beginning, I expect some tough races until we find that the car’s setup works for the first five or six races. With the Alpine I struggled a lot to feel the front end, there were different power-assisted steering setups… there were all these things. This year we only have one and a half days for each driver to test in Bahrain. I will not be 100% in Bahrain, Jeddah, or Australia. So that’s a little unfair, maybe. This is the only sport in the world where you train for a day and a half and then compete for a world championship. In a way, I think that I have a point of reference in Lance, as he has been with the team for years. I know what 100% is, so I can get close to that value. And yes, we will see. We have a better chance to fight for wins and podiums next year if we have a good base this year. This year we will not be in the position we should be, but we’ll see”.

Your teammate is your boss’s son. How do you deal with this? Are you afraid that there may be complications?

“Not really. I’ve been in F1 long enough to know different things and experience different teammates and personalities. I was thinking of Jacques Villeneuve when you asked the question. That was quite an experience. We only had three races, but yeah, it was fun. And yes, I think with Lance it’s a little different. I feel a little differently, as I already mentioned in Abu Dhabi, or during this winter. I have faith in this project. I know it will probably be the last team I will drive for. But I don’t know, I’ve known Lawrence and Lance for many years. I’ve known Lance since he was a child in the Ferrari academy in 2010, so we have known each other for 12 years. And now we have this wonderful opportunity to share the team, to work together for an Aston Martin that hopefully can compete in championships in the future. So, if I’m driving, it’s fine, and if I’m not behind the wheel, it will be fine too. I already said it in Abu Dhabi, and I say it now: I will be very proud to be a part of this organization in any way, and if one day we have an Aston Martin dominating races and championships and two drivers fighting for the championship like Red Bull, with Sebastian and Webber or Hamilton and Bottas you know, helping these guys fight for a championship, it will also be a proud moment for me, as I am part of this brand since the inception”.


Frédéric Vasseur and SF-23 Make the Perfect Match

The most awaited car has finally arrived. Ferrari presented the SF-23, the new single seater, with which they will compete in the 2023 Formula 1 World Championship with the intent to bring home the world titles to Maranello 15 and 16 years after the last wins (driver and constructors in 2007 and constructors in 2008).

Ferrari’s new red single-seater made its debut on the track in Fiorano, taking advantage of the 7 laps on a short track, covering the kilometers allowed by the FIA international sporting code for Shakedown. The first to enter the track was Charles Leclerc.

The SF-23 is a very important single-seater for the Italian manufacturer, not only because it is under the direction of the new team principal, Frédéric Vasseur, who could only do so much since joining the team on January 3rd of this year and the car is a product of Mattio Binotto’s team in 2022. It is important because it can now reach its full potential without giving up mid-season like last year, now that the motor’s reliability issues are solved. 

The SF-23 is not a revolution, but rather a highly sought-after evolution, a much-improved version of the F1-75, with many new features. The first big change is the nose, now less pointed and, above all, anchored to the second element of the front wing. The opening at the tip of the nose, below the Cavallino logo is no longer NACA. Additionally, the cantilever profiles of the vertical drifts have been modified, now placed higher and with a more sinuous shape. In the central part of the car, there are two slits to the side protections for the driver’s head, clearly visible in photos taken from behind the car.


Presumably, air ducts could have been opened in the halo area. The halo itself features a novelty, with the addition of a small airfoil at the top. The visor is almost the same as last year, while the hood has been slightly modified. The side vents are constantly changing.. The F1-75 had one row of fixed vents. To close the slits in the body, it was necessary to place a panel under it but this year it’s different. 

The suspension keeps the philosophy of the F1-75: front push rod and rear pull rod. Ferrari has worked to increase the car’s vertical load, but also the loss due to the regulations’ modification to reduce the rebound effect seen, especially in the first part of last season. In all this, the work carried out to find the desired balance and the completely redesigned suspension was fundamental. The suspensions have been revised for aerodynamic reasons and to improve reaction times when making settings on the track. The front, above all, has undergone the most apparent changes, going to a low track configuration precisely for aerodynamic reasons.


In terms of decor, the color black has a greater impact than last year, even on the SF-23. The wings remain black carbon to avoid adding paint weight, except outside the side appendages. The entire external part is now black, even the passenger compartment and the engine hood. Compared to last year, as mentioned, the vertical sides of the wings are partly red. This year, however, the tricolor flag is placed on the bonnet flap, right next to the numbers of the two drivers and just above Santander. The Ferrari name is on the rear wing again, as it was on the Scuderia last year for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. The difference, however, is the color: then they used yellow and this time it will be white. It is also important to note that the red is lighter than last year.


In his debut as Ferrari Team Principal, Frederic Vasseaur said: “For sure, we will be competitive with the two drivers from Bahrain, but the most important thing is Ferrari. Ferrari has priority. Ferrari must win. We must not be happy just because we are here.” We, Ferrari, must win. We are happy to be back on the racetrack and must be satisfied with the work done. It will be a very long season, but we will have to perform well. The engine has excellent performance, but reliability was certainly not our strongest suit. We did a great job at the factory in improving this. Last year we had a tiny window to leverage the engine. This year we have worked to make sure we can make the most of it.”


– José María Rubio.



The exclusive Maserati Mistral Spyder

Since the Maserati company’s beginnings, its road cars have been characterized by their thoroughbred engineering and contemporary styling. The Mistral Spyder is a particularly successful example of this approach to building sports cars, as it combines the competition-derived twin-spark DOHC straight six with a masterful Giovanni Michelotti design, executed by Carrozzeria Frua. The successor to the popular 3500 GT, the Maserati Mistral was produced in relatively limited numbers, with 828 examples of the two-seater coupe built. Far more exclusive was the Spyder model, of which just 120 were made during its eight-year run. Maserati ended production of the Mistral in 1970.


According to the research of Dr. Adolfo Orsi, the order for this car was placed in spring 1967 by Al Garthwaite through Trident Imported Motors of Rosemont, Pennsylvania. Factory records confirm that this Spyder, chassis AM109.SA1.673, was originally specified in Rosso Capannelle paint with black leather upholstery, carpets, and soft top. Additional options, including a limited-slip differential, Borrani wire wheels, large 60 mm diameter exhaust pipes and safety belts, contributed to the $8,532 price tag.


A relatively late-production Mistral Spyder, this car is one of just 37 examples built with the four-liter engine — the final and most powerful variation of the classic Maserati twin-cam six. With its Lucas mechanical fuel injection, this refined engine produces 255 BHP and outstanding torque.


In May 1967, this car began its journey to the U.S. aboard the SS President Arthur. Sold to its original owner through Trident Imported Motors, the Maserati remained in the Mid-Atlantic region ever since. In 2016, it was discovered in a storage unit outside Washington, D.C. 


The present owner, Juan Manuel Fayen, bought this rare four-liter Mistral Spyder in its original condition from Gooding & Company in 2017. Moved by his passion for Italian cars, Mr. Fayen sent the car to be restored in Modena, Italy by the Maserati experts “Candini Classiche” and “Bacchelli & Villa.” It took two years to return the car to its original condition.


Since its arrival in June 2019, it has been part of Mr. Fayen’s personal car collection stored in his private luxury suite at CollectionSuites, Miami. 


Ferrari, one of the most coveted cars on and off the tracks. 

For decades, the Italian supercar manufacturer, Ferrari, has set the standard in terms of innovation, design, and performance. An incredible journey that started over 70 years ago in Modena, Italy with avid racecar driver and dreamer, Enzo Ferrari. Ferrari’s passion for cars went beyond his days revving engines on the tracks. His keen obsession for aesthetics and performance led him to design some of the most coveted cars on and off the tracks.


In 1947 Ferrari was founded. The years to follow were glorious and would set Enzo Ferrari and his team on the path to success. Ferrari made headlines for winning prestigious races including Mille Miglia (1948), Le Mans 24 Hour Race (1949) and the F1 World Championship Grand Prix (1951). Soon, the Italian luxury brand was accessible to elite racecar drivers from all over the world, in their signature red color.


One of the last cars in Enzo Ferrari’s career was the 1989 Ferrari F40 Berlinetta. Built to commemorate 40 years of Ferrari, the F40 one of the most desirable and important modern models for car collectors, regarded for its unmatched performance and lightweight.


For CollectionSuites’ founder Juan Manuel Fayen, the F40 car is emblematic, and no Ferrari collection is complete without it. It’s the same F40 that landed CollectionSuites the title of “The best in Class” at Palm Beach Concours D’Elegance, an event that features some most sought-after automotives from classics to exotics.