Ferrari believes that early testing form will not provide any clear indication of the 2011 form book, with team boss Stefano Domenicali predicting it will only be at the final two tests where the true picture will emerge.
While a majority of teams will get down to work with their 2011 challengers at Valencia next week, Domenicali says his squad is not going to worry about out-and-out pace in its early running. Instead, it wants to focus on good reliability for the new F150 and being sure that it hits peak pace only for the first race of the season in Bahrain.
"I am not expecting at the first test to have a real picture of the competition," said Domenicali at the launch of Ferrari's new car on Friday. "All of us will pursue different objectives and only in Barcelona [for the third test] will we understand something more. In the [final] Bahrain test we will have a better idea of the competitive situation."
He added: "We will have a flavor of performance after Valencia and Jerez, but in the third test we will get a good overview, as at Barcelona there are some bends where we tended to be a little bit inferior compared to our opponents. We will understand there if we have improved in that technical aspect, which was not our strength."
Ferrari's team principal wants to take a more conservative approach to testing this year to ensure that the team can deliver a strong haul of points early on in the campaign. He is well aware that, although a strategy error cost it the 2010 title in the final race in Abu Dhabi, it could have avoided being in that situation by not having lost so many points early on in the campaign.
"It is fundamental to start well, because in a championship like last year if you don't gain points from the very beginning you may pay the price at the end. I think that, in terms of reliability and performance, it is important not to lose points," said Domenicalli. "This is very important. Of course, you have opportunities to recover, but the more points you can get, the better it is to be in the top ranking."
Domenicali also said that he was not worried at the moment about the possibility of rival teams having found potential loopholes in the 2011 regulations.
"I've been told that the others have interpreted these rules in a very aggressive way, but I am used to not reacting in an aggressive way," he said. "We will see and understand if it is true or not, or whether it is a promotional campaign."