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Ferrari Engines Go Boom Again

Charles Leclerc leading Max Verstappen in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix
Dan Mullan/Getty Images

I am not a professional mechanic. I only know how to open the hood of my car, how to check the oil and the coolant, and how to drive my car to someone who actually knows what’s going on with it. One thing I do understand about cars, though, is that a car engine should not give out in the middle of driving it. That’s bad. The engine certainly should not be blowing smoke out onto the guy driving it. I say this because Ferrari, one of the world’s best engine makers, appears to have forgotten, so it seems best to remind them.

Engines should not be gasping out a dying breath in the middle of Formula One races, as they did not once, not twice, but four times in today’s Grand Prix in Baku, Azerbaijan. The first car to die today was Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari, with what engineers on the broadcast reported as a “hydraulic issues.” I don’t know what that means, but it sounds bad.

Then on turn 20, Ferrari’s other driver Charles LeClerc had to retire his car because smoke was pouring out of it and onto his head! That seems super bad! He was in the lead, too!

Then, two more cars with Ferrari engines (Alfa Romeo’s Guanyu Zhou and Haas’ Kevin Magnusson) had to retire. Extremely bad! Bad for many reasons, one of which is that both Carlos Sainz and Charles LeClerc are Defector Sweeties. How dare our sweeties be mistreated like this by their mean mechanics! What kind of unfair world is this?

The second reason is that yet again it feels like a race this season is being decided not by the actual drivers, but by engine unreliability. This isn’t fun to watch. It sucked when it happened to Red Bull earlier this year, and it sucks now. But Red Bull simply stopped having that problem. Ferrari should do the same!

Max Verstappen of Red Bull won today’s Grand Prix, followed closely by his Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez. Had the two Ferrari cars, which have been Red Bull’s best competition this season, lasted, the race would have been more interesting and more fun. Without them, Red Bull coasted to a victory that didn’t feel exciting. There was no pressure at the end, no lead changes for first place, and none of tight passes a street race usually offers at the top of the pack.

“It hurts,” Leclerc told Sky Sports. “We need to look into it so it doesn’t happen again. I don’t find the right words to describe. It’s really disappointing. We need to look into it.”

I agree! Someone should look into it! Seems like something is wrong under there!

Today’s failure comes just two Grands Prix after LeClerc’s engine failure in Spain cost him the top podium spot. In the most recent race at Monoco, Ferrari also managed to destroy LeClerc’s lead with a botched pit stop that lost him precious time and landed him in 4th place.

It’s not that the Ferrari car isn’t fast! LeClerc has earned pole position in 6 of the 8 races so far this season. The problem is that the car is unreliable. It is spitting out smoke. It is locking up. It is a small terror! The Ferrari engines are going boom now almost every race. If I were in charge of Scuderia Ferrari, I would simply fix the engines! I would not allow them to spit out smoke all the time or cause my sweeties to retire early from the race. It is bad for the team to lose points because of engine failures, but it is also bad for me (a new fan) to be robbed of fun racing by a silly engine problem.

They should probably fix the engines soon, too. Because the next Grand Prix is in seven days. Good luck!

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