How the West was F1
Austin 2014
US Grand Prix
Paddock reaction to Alonso’s new five year Ferrari deal
Scuderia Ferrari
Paddock reaction to Alonso’s new five year Ferrari deal
Posted By: James Allen  |  19 May 2011   |  6:05 pm GMT  |  125 comments

The news today that Fernando Alonso has signed a new five year contract keeping him with Ferrari until the end of 2016 has been met with an interesting reaction in the Barcelona paddock.


Alonso himself appeared in the press conference and said that the whole process of contract renewal had taken only two weeks from start to finish. His reason for committing the rest of his career to the Scuderia was very clear, “I think the intention is to keep enjoying racing, ” he said. “For sure, I think I’m in the best team possible to fight for World Championships. I think some other teams go up and down. They have good years and bad years. At Ferrari, in the worst season you finish third or second in the World Championship, so this is something that Ferrari can offer to a driver.”

There have been a range of views on this in the paddock this afternoon from drivers and others. There is speculation about what might be linked to the deal, Santander’s long term funding, for example and one wonders what engineers from other teams Alonso might have identified as targets for Ferrari to hire, as team and driver opt for stability and growth.

There was also speculation about whether the contract specified what series Alonso would be racing in with Ferrari, the threat of a breakaway lurking quietly in the background as the negotiations over F1′s commercial future continue.

It is clear that there is quite a statement being made here by Ferrari and there is a political dimension to it as well; it says to Bernie Ecclestone, CVC and the FIA that Ferrari is in control of one of the sport’s leading drivers, another leading F1 asset under its control.

Michael Schumacher was unaware of the news until he was asked about it this afternoon in a press briefing. As a man who had a 10 year love affair with Ferrari, did he feel like he would if another man made a long term commitment to his former girlfriend? He said, “Not really, I believe in continuity for success and I’m sure he feels very comfortable there”.

Lewis Hamilton’s reaction was fascinating; asked if he was sad that this meant he wouldn’t driver for Ferrari he said, “Why not?” He added that he would have no problem racing alongside Alonso again, although he doubted that the feeling was mutual. “I’ll beat him in a different car,” said Alonso’s 2007 McLaren team mate.

Nico Rosberg, whose name is forever being linked with possible deals at all the top teams, was asked whether he could imagine himself committing to a five year deal with a team if the circumstances were right. “I could..” he said, thoughtfully. “But it is a very long time.”

Jenson Button, who is now 31 years old, agreed that five years is a long time when you do not know what is around the corner, “How does he know what he’s going to want to do in five years? That is the thing I can’t believe. Why does he need to sign a five-year contract?” said Button.

“Five years is long. We don’t know what’s going to happen in five years’ time do we? I’m not very good at planning that far into the future.”

Ferrari is, however and the news has been received with rapture in Italy; the team that is always there or thereabouts has secured the driver who is always there or thereabouts.

Featured Video
ferhorsepower
Horse Power – Shell & Ferrari’s journey to 2014
Featured News in ferrari
MORE FROM Ferrari
LATEST FROM THE SCUDERIA FERRARI COMMUNITY
Previous
Next
Share This:
Posted by:
Category:
125 Comments
  1. Richard M says:

    Anyone else get tired of Hamilton’s bs? He is only saying he would not mind being Alonso’s team mate again because he knows it would never happen.

    1. nando says:

      Why would he say anything else? He’s just answering the question. Driving alongside Alonso may not be his first preference but it doesn’t mean he’d rule it out. Senna was prepared to drive alongside Prost for free.
      Hamilton said his ideal team-mate would be Rosberg.

    2. fieraku says:

      Or maybe he doesn’t fear Alonso and knows he can beat him as he’s done in the past.
      Just maybe

    3. Dave C says:

      Yes I am 1 sick of Hanilton’s ‘bs’! It’s getting old and he wouldn’t dare step in there with Alonso’s team knowing Ron’s not there to save his backside this time!

      1. Neil Smith says:

        [mod] if you were in Lewis’ position and were asked the same question, what would you say? Can I assume that you wouldn’t say “No way, that Alonso is too quick for me!”

      2. Dave C says:

        If I was in his position I would of told the truth and said there’s no room for 2 of us at Ferrari, it’ll damage both’s title chances and in term of pace and talent we’re too similar which would lead to Vettel claiming another 2-3 easy titles.

    4. Steven says:

      I think he is allowed to say whatever he wants. I get tired of Alonso’s BS about Ferrari being the best team…

      1. brendan says:

        he is allowed to say what he likes(lewis and fernando)

        and ferrari is the best team for alonso.

        like mclaren is for lewis. he would be in for a big shock if he left mcl and went into vettel’s team at red bull.

        he has never been in a team where he doesnt have 100% backing of the team. it would be an eye opener for him.

      2. I’m not sure McLaren is the best team for Lewis any more. Speaking to my engineer friends there recently, Hamilton’s relationship with the team has been deteriorating for some time.

        He’s frustrated with the team’s inability to provide him with a title-winning car and their poor strategy calls and whereas in the past he might’ve bitten his tongue, now he just lets them have it. Lewis is often rude, foul-mouthed and accusatory in his meetings with McLaren staff, to the point where some engineers (in aero especially) dread his debriefs.

        If McLaren are the only team for him and he’s committed to them for the rest of his career, he’s got a funny way of showing it.

    5. Unoccv3 says:

      It’s easy to take the moral high ground when there is no ground to take.

    6. For Sure says:

      I am not a fan of Lewis but its not bs. You have everyright to say you are confident to beat Alonso, if u did in your rookie year – fact.

      1. brendan says:

        well they finished equal on points but yes, but lewis hasnt been as good as he was in his rookie season-as you say-fact, even his title season wasnt as good as his rookie one.

        rookie season didnt mean too much really. his run of podiums that season was amazing. and for me he has never rematched that performance level

    7. Monad says:

      Yes he knows it won’t happen because Alonso won’t allow it and we all know that. So who’s scared of who? The guy had no problem matching him in his rookie year why won’t he be confident he can match him now that he has more experience?
      If Hamilton says to Ferrari i want to drive for you, to you really think Ferrari won’t want him? The only reason not to make a deal with him will be because Alonso will not accept it.
      He probably already has a “non Hamilton” clause in his contract.
      It’s the same way Prost was avoiding Senna after their years in Mclaren.

      1. Aey says:

        Totally agree . . .

        Alonso won’t allow it to happen.

        Alonso always want No1 status and for sure Lewis won’t be No2 in any team.

        If Lewis come in the same status, and if Alonso being beaten by Lewis again.

        Where will Alonso be?

        I quite sure that Lewis, at least, can match Alonso in any eaual car.

        I never heard Alonso want strong teammate, that he always said Massa is good enough teammate . . . Massa never give alonso any headache . . so, his status in ferrari is safe

        If Lewis is easy teammate, Alonso won’t have any problem with him . . . the problem is Lewis is too good, too strong to be Alonso teammate.

        Alonso always want easy teammate like Fisi, Piquet or Massa . . . this is always true.

        not only Lewis that he don’t want, if Vettel going to be his teammate, I don’t think he will like it too.

        Massa performance is quite poor, if he is release from Ferrari I can’t imagine which team want to sign Massa

        When Ferrari say Massa is good, we want to keep him, I almost laugh and ask . . Does Ferrari Management really think about Massa that way seriously.

        Ferrari can easily find other drivers that is surely better and faster than Massa … Nico Hulkenberg is available at no cost.

        Massa seat is safe because Alonso like it to be this way . . . just give him easy teammate.

  2. Dale says:

    Of the top 3 drivers, most I think will agree these being Hamilton, Alonso & Vetel (could have been 4 had Kubica not been injured) it seems to me it’s only Hamilton who’d happily race in the same team as one of the others – now what does that say?

    1. Michael S says:

      I think Vettel would too…. Alonso is the only driver on the grid I can think of who has had drivers move over for him several times through the years…

      1. James Draper says:

        Michael Schumacher is on the grid still.

      2. JR says:

        Hamilton too.

      3. Baktru says:

        Hardly a current top driver though..

      4. Dale says:

        If that’s true than hats off to him but when it came to it I’d be surprised.

        When one car is way ahead of the others ads Williams, McLaren and Ferrari have all enjoyed in the past it’s only when the team has two drivers of top class AND allows them to race is the racing any good.

        Only McLaren have done this, Williams allow their drivers to race but never have TWO top flight drivers whilst we all (well I suspect most of us) remember the boring Ferrari Schumacher days.

        It’ll be interesting to see what happens this year at RedBull.

        I’d love to see Hamilton & Alonso in the same team again both with equal billing, fireworks there would be which would be great for F1 but alas it’ll never happen as Alonso couldn’t take it whilst Hamilton would relish it as maybe Vettel would and I think Kubica would, now what’s that say about Alonso?

      5. JR says:

        What makes you think that Hamilton and Vettel would relish? I would love to see those two facing the situation that Alonso had at McLaren in 2007…

      6. Curro says:

        It says he’s been around longer than LH & SV, and has no time for intra-team rivalries. He’s 30 this year and still wants to win a couple more titles.

      7. Aey says:

        Alonso not only need 100% backup, he need 110% by the help of his teammate like piguet hit the barrier or Massa move away from him.

        This is what Alonso like. . . 100% backup is not enough.

    2. Adrian Jordan says:

      What about Heidfeld? He beat Kubica in 3 out of their 4 seasons together.

      1. TheLegend says:

        ¿¿Heidfeld top driver?? OMG..

  3. For Sure says:

    One of the reasons why I don’t like Alonso is because I always thought that he is the kinda guy who would always go for the team with the best car unlike Michael. Nothing wrong with that tho, it just a personal preference. But may be he proved me wrong on this one. With red bull and Adrian supremecy, it looks like he is prepared to do what Michael did if he needs to. You gotta respect that.

    1. nando says:

      I think after his Mclaren experience he’d be very reluctant to join Red Bull while Vettel is there. That doesn’t leave him any option other than developing the Ferrari, you’d assume a 5-year contractmay have get-out clauses anyway. I’m not sure Santander and Mercedes would work.

    2. Monad says:

      Every great driver wants the best car. They live for the win not to come second. That isn’t a crime.
      The problem with him is not that, but the fact that he doesn’t even want competition. He doesn’t want other top drivers as teammates and he wants special favors. That’s bloody annoying. If you think you are the best then get on with it, just get in the car and beat them out there in the track, stop wanting extra privileges.

  4. Damian J says:

    James,

    Hardly surprising. There are not many other teams for Alonso to go to after Ferrari!

    Not sure why Hamilton should be sad either as a well paid driver in the McLaren team that has much chance of success as Ferrari. It’s also a good driver pairing with Button.

    1. Galapago555 says:

      I agree that there’s not other team for any driver after Ferrari.

      Only surprising point for me is the long term. How many times have we seen such a long time frame for an F1 contract?

      1. Damian J says:

        There is life after Ferrari with other teams for most drivers but where else could Alonso go?

        The only possibility would be with Redbull but I suspect Alonso is seeking a “I am the No 1 driver” contract which he thought he had at McLaren.

      2. Aey says:

        Agree

        At Mclaren, he always say he is 2 WDC, he need better treatment than teammate.

        if I were Mclaren boss, I would ask him What the 2WDC could show to the world, how to beat rookie teammate with the same treatment.

        As 2 time WDC, he shold show what he could do on track.

        Black mail the team when he can’t beat rookie teammate, is that what 2 WDC should only do?

      3. nando says:

        Prost, Mansell, Fangio and Lauda are four I can immediately think of who won world championships after leaving Ferrari. I think Damian was making a point specific to Alonso though.

  5. Damian J says:

    A 5 year deal means nothing. Ask Kimi! Driver seats are revolving doors even at the top end of the table.

    Wait until the next big driver comes along and LdM will be giving him the push.

    1. Michael S says:

      Kimi did not have Santander…. Alonso has one of the biggest sponsors in F1 opening all the doors right now…

      1. K-F1 says:

        +1

        That’s the only reason why Kimi lost out imo. If Kimi had some sponsor with big fat wallets, he’d still be in F1 and wouldn’t have been shown the door.

      2. Unoccv3 says:

        I think ‘Ferrari’ spent more paying out Raikkonen and paying Alonso for his year than HRT had for their whole budget or something similiar to that

      3. John Gibson says:

        Kimi was pushed out of Ferrari because he didn’t appear to care. He should have won the 08 title comfortably because, frankly, if Massa could finish within one point of Hamilton then Kimi should have been a good ten points clear once you consider his natural ability. There were several races in 08 where he appeared to be half asleep. He didn’t seem particularly bothered in the first half of 09 either.

        Whereas Alonso never seems to give up, as evidenced by his turning around an apparently hopeless situation in last year’s WDC.

      4. Dave C says:

        Very true, Kimi was a great talent but the robot seemed to run out of steam in 2008, even in 2007 the signs of decline was there. Ferrari is no a nonsense team and didn’t put up with Kimi’s lack of motivation, as you said he should of won the 2008 title he was the favourite, imagine if Alonso was driving that F2008 instead of the Renault R28 that year instead of Kimi! On the form of the last 2 years he would of walked to the title and Ferrari knew Kimi threw away the title that year, they’d pay big to get rid of him.

      5. Kedar says:

        Agreed Kimi didnt have Santander but at that time Santander didnt have the “Bail out” crisis
        Who knows what will happen to the banks as they are viewed as the bad guys in most of the world

    2. Kimi also got paid for that final year of his contract… I wouldn’t be too sad to go race in WRC while getting my F1 paycheck still!

    3. Dale says:

      Oh yes it does, it means Alonso will be getting a lot of money.

      Contacts, if legal are always honoured in F1 and any contract can be paid off if it suited.

      If Alonso’s form takes a dive or others improve further he’ll still be earning the big money and that’s because he has a contract that DOES mean something.

      1. RichyS says:

        I think that’s a lot of speculation. The headline figure might be 5 years, but you can guarantee that there will be all sorts of break points and performance related clauses (on both sides) that may mean both sides could walk away if (for example) Ferrari’s 4 pot turbo engine (two Fiat 500 twin airs!!?) turns out to be a dog.

  6. Jo Torrent says:

    Why Alonso made the right move
    ***************************

    In F1 today, there are 2 top teams : Ferrari & McLaren. RBR is not yet a top team because it has delivered for 3 years only at the top and because its success relies strongly on a single individual, namely Newey. It is never good to rely on one person.

    Alonso chances of going back to McLaren are slim. RBR isn’t a long term bet and Vettel is settled there so Alonso only chance to guarantee success is Ferrari.

    Not only that, but he is settled and happy at Ferrari which wasn’t always the case at Renault and never the case at McLaren. For him it was straightforward in my view.

    Not only that but the long term contract guarantees Alonso further commitment from the team towards him, and implicitly closes the door for Hamilton and Vettel for the next 5 years.

    1. Damian J says:

      I suspect Vettel could be tempted to Ferrari but would Ferrari want to handle the pressure of two drivers unwilling to settle for team orders in a team that likes to practice team orders at such an early stage in the season?

      I also wonder if Alonso has a contract that gives him some influence on driver choice in the team or has any special racing terms such as priority on new parts?

      1. mtb says:

        I guess that he wouldn’t want to go to a team that tells drivers to “save fuel” in round 7 then ;)

    2. PSW says:

      There We Are Then…

    3. DM on F1 says:

      Is it really the right move?

      I believe A. Newly has come a step closer to what was J. Barnard from the late 70′s to late 90′s. The RBR is a solid team now that must not be ruled out. Is it that because they haven’t been racing for 50yrs, they can’t be considered a long lasting winning team? I don’t think they are going to be a copycat of what happened to Renault.

      –Please, don’t misunderstand my comment about Adrian, as I’m not saying that he will be as good as John; remember we are in completely different times. Is like the question, who would you rather? Fangio or Senna?–

      I think that you are right saying that “Alonso’s only chance to guarantee success is Ferrari” considering RBR hasn’t been really interested in the Spaniard (having a superb skilled, charismatic & younger Vettel), and ruling out Mclaren due to his so polemic relationship with Dennis & Whitmarshback in 2007.

      But was it the best decision for both parties? I’m not sure about it.

      Alonso is a fantastic driver no word on that (and not really liked in the Paddock). His temperament is quite volatile, and Ferrari must be wise replacing F. Massa, with a (rookie) team mate who can’t take a podium finish away from him. I hope N. Rosberg is not going to end up filling Massa’s place in Ferrari, otherwise the newly married smile might change.

  7. Red5 says:

    Will be interesting to see how Hamilton, Vettel, McLaren and Red Bull respond. I mean over the next 5 years.

    It’s certainly a strong statement of intent from Ferrari and Alonso. You have to admit, other teams will struggle to beat what many consider to be the perfect combination.

    1. Tim. says:

      ..and they get the wind tunnel fixed they will be strong

    2. Unoccv3 says:

      Best combo is pretty much Newey + fast driver.

      It’s all pretty much stuck, all boring silly seaosns.

      McLaren
      Hamilton – staying for ages
      Button – wants to finish at McLaren and they like him

      Red Bull
      Vettel – they love him
      Red Bull jr – no one too fast after Webber, and will support one of their own. Might even let them race if they are both ex-Red Bull rookies

      Ferrari
      Alonso – contract
      Massa – currently, whomever.

      Renault, Mercedes may get there..

      But currently it’s 1 seat at a top team the rest all gone. ANd that one seat isn’t exactly easy

  8. JTG says:

    Hamilton – ‘why not?” What an answer.

    It would simply be amazing to see an Englishman at Ferrari.

    1. Joker says:

      Nigel Mansell had a go in a red car. Even if he gave Prost and the Scuderia some troubles in 1990, in Italy he was highly, highly rated and still remembered as one of the greatest. Hungary 1989, enough said. Nationality is not a problem, as far as it’s a great driver.

      1. mtb says:

        Indeed he was! And Ferrari was (indirectly) considered to be the FIA’s victim by certain journalists and fans at that time.

      2. Steven says:

        Il Leone…

    2. mtb says:

      John Surtees? Mike Hawthorn? Peter Collins?

    3. demano says:

      Prefer to see an Italian
      “Englishmen are not good drivers and are viewed as jokes.” Quote by Scotsman Jim Clark.

      1. boulay says:

        with 8 english F1 champions (2 scots are excluded) compared to 2 italians (and none since 1953) i know who i would prefer…..

  9. AlexD says:

    As a forever Ferrari fan I wish them to win many races and championships. But! I have a friend who doesn’t think that Ferrari is going to win a championship as long as Alonso is there [mod] A sense of justice….
    Who knows…I wish Alonso was different…

    1. Tim. says:

      I have a friend who says they will win three with FA :)

    2. Galapago555 says:

      I have a friend who says he doesn’t believe in Santa Claus.

    3. rodger says:

      I agree with your friend Alex. I was shocked when Alonso was hired by Ferrari, especially considering Alonso’s involvement in the spygate scandal.It was sheer idiocy to hire a driver who had conspired against them.
      As an Italian I am honour-bound to support the prancing horse, but I simply can’t bring myself to with Alonso in the team. My friends get upset with me, especially when I jumped in the air when Ferrari cocked it up in last year’s final race.
      Maybe I’m wrong…I haven’t met too many who share my views. But until Alonso leaves, I will not support Ferrari. And, evidently, that’s going to be a long time now…

      1. AlexD says:

        We shall see. I think that equity of a driver…equity of a person in general is extremely important.
        People are mostly hungry for success and as long as Alonso is there to bring glory to Ferrari and fans he will be loved. Question remains though..what is the path people chose to reach success and how many moral rules are broken on the way to achieve it.
        We tend to bound the meaning of the truth based on what suits us and in the world we live today there is no single version of the truth. This, however is a fake reality…there is always going to be a single version of truth and there is always going to be a mark on your equity for everything you have done.
        How Alonso is going to be remembered? That is the question!

      2. For Sure says:

        Thanks for sharing. I thought I was the only one. I was hoping to support Ferrari again when Alonso is gone. Now I am trying to like Alonso so wish me good luck with this one.

  10. Jo Torrent says:

    Hamilton strange declarations
    *************************

    I don’t see why Hamilton said what he said. What is clear is that he’s getting fed up with McLaren relative lack of competitiveness. I remember Hamilton declaring how he wanted to do all his career at Woking, not anymore.

    He sees his career through the Senna/Prost prism. He said that he saw Alonso as his Prost but history rarely repeats itself and Vettel is ruining Hamilton’s scenario.

    From a simple story with the good (Hamilton) and the bad (Alonso) it turned to be “the good, the bad & the ugly”. And Vettel has been very ugly in Hamilton eyes so far, he is 2 year younger than him and he is very likely to grab 2 titles before him which will put a shade on Hamilton’s achievements. He stripped him of the youngest F1 world champion title. Not only that but Vettel is youngest pole & race winner.

    The emotions of China victory were telling of how Hamilton fortunes have fallen recently. He is in a situation where he doesn’t know what he should do to achieve his aspirations of being the best of his era and one of the best of all time.

    In that respect, his declaration was either made to annoy Alonso or because he seriously considers Ferrari as a future alternative to McLaren. In that case, Alonso’s contract is a big blow to his aspirations. I don’t see Ferrari putting them in the same garage, they’re not fools.

    As thing are shaping up right now with Vettel committed to RBR and Alonso married with Ferrari, Hamilton best choice is to stick with his fiancée and stop flirting with others.

    The problem is his new manager who is as close to F1 as Briatore to Ethics.

    Wait & see….

    P.S : Alonso seems annoyed with Vettel too as he just declared to tom cary (Telegraph) that he sees Hamilton as his main rival in coming years. Alonso doesn’t want to be matched as double world champion. This Vettel is fast becoming “the ugly” of the story.

    1. Tim. says:

      “The problem is his new manager who is as close to F1 as Briatore to Ethics.”

      Very good…

    2. DM on F1 says:

      Is it that Vettel is the “ugly” of the story? Mmm… so Alonso will be what? …

      Totally agree about L. Hamilton’s new Hollywood management.

    3. mtb says:

      Great stuff Jo!

      1. Damian J says:

        but not when “you’re doing it again Jo!” :)

    4. Christoff says:

      Posts like that are why I come here :D

      1. Galapago555 says:

        +1

        Brilliant, Jo.

    5. For Sure says:

      Interesting view, Lewis was thinking about Senna and Prost and the new Schumacher came along and spoiled the party. History does repeat itself, may be slightly different version.

    6. RC says:

      Very well put. I love the way RedBull and Vettel have got in the way and screwed up so many F1 narratives.

    7. Stevie P says:

      Err, why is it so confusing Jo? Hamilton fears no-one or rather, he would back himself against any driver in the field in equal equipment i.e., he feels he is as good as anyone else in the field (plenty of other drivers feel this way too – Rosberg for one). So if Ferrari said “would you come and drive for us alongside Alonso, Lewis?” Lewis would say “sure”; if the roles were reversed and Lewis was at Ferrari and they asked Alonso to join them, we all know what the answer would be!

    8. **Paul** says:

      Completely agree Jo, if Vettel takes another WDC he’ll have won it twice in 3 years of having a car capable of winning it, that’s a good record. Again is a better stat than Hamilton who has thrown it away a couple of times with driver errors and surely would put him as the best young driver on the grid bar none.

      The RBR team do have a very fast car but you still have to go out and win races to get championships. It’s also worth noting how unreliable the RBR was until this season, an issue that McLaren haven’t really had for years.

      Lewis likes to compare himself to Senna, and fans who perhaps didn’t watch much of Aryton then regurgitate this. Realistically Ayrton was a far harder more focused guy than Lewis will ever be, and the only real similarity was that they both drove/drive for McLaren. Senna was absolutely ruthless, and I mean absolutely. The only drivers I’ve seen who have an ounce of that are Schumacher and Alonso, and they (much like Senna at the time) when performing such ruthless moves get/got a lot of abuse about them.

      If I was to suggest an older F1 driver Hamilton reminds me of it would be Nelson Piquet without question, a 3 time WDC I might add, but one who’s sole goal perhaps wasn’t winning as many races and loved a good party with the ladies. He like Hamilton also had a bit of temper when things didn’t go his way and when paired with Mansell the atmosphere was similar to that of when LH was paired with FA.

      1. Dave C says:

        Totally agree, Hamilton is no Senna and Alonso is better than Prost, but Vettel is fast emerging as the new Schumacher though.

      2. Jo Torrent says:

        Sadly I know nothing about Piquet besides the bitter season with Mansell.

      3. nando says:

        Alonso as ruthless as Senna? Senna would have imposed himself on Mclaren if he came to them as a two time world champion with a rookie team-mate.

      4. MikeyB says:

        Great comment, Paul. I found Senna’s focus and intensity almost frightening, which is what made his races such a rivetting spectacle. Hamilton has prodigious talent, but he isn’t in the same league in regard to character and passion. And if he stays in the ‘comfy chair’ of McLaren, he’ll never have any real incentive to develop to his full potential, IMHO.

  11. Michael S says:

    I don’t see Alonso ever wanting a top teammate after what happened to him in ’07… he prefers to call the tower and have Fisi or Massa move over on command. So from that standpoint it is sad Ferrari will be like it was when Schumi called the tune for the next 6 years.

    1. Sad? I think Ferrari would disagree with that, they seem rather pleased with their trophies.

    2. mtb says:

      Was Massa called to move over for him in Malaysia and China?

    3. Steven says:

      The biggest blow to Alonso in 07 was that Hamilton wasnt considered a “top” teammate yet, he was just a rookie

  12. Jack says:

    is this them officially crowning him as the new Schumacher then? I suppose now they can completely build their team around him and get some continuity going. I’d be most interested to hear Massa’s (honest) opinion, but that’s unlikely for a few years I reckon

    1. Storm says:

      What do you want him to say? What do you expect him to say? No driver in F1 will agree that his teammate or any other driver for that matter, is better than them.
      But as everyone knows, there are very few ppl who can hold a candle to Alonso, and Massa is not one of them.
      In some weird way, its good that the three best drivers on the grid are in 3 separate teams. Hamiltons dream of a ferrari drive might all but be over now, but he is still in a very competitive seat at McLaren. Nico wouldnt complain i am sure.
      Vettel is on a high right now and its difficult to feel sorry for his chances.

      Ferrari have done the right thing and secured the services of the greatest driver on the grid at the moment. In return, Alonso gets to develop and race for the greatest F1 team in history. Its a perfect combination.

  13. Dom says:

    Presumably the contract contains a veto over any possible no. 2 driver….

    1. Jo Torrent says:

      I don’t believe in a written veto but an oral understanding between them.

    2. Storm says:

      And hopefully this contract is honoured unlike the contract he signed with Fair uncle Ron.

  14. Andy c says:

    I Just wonder whether there might be a certain well respected tech director joining him next year. Watch this space.

  15. Jonty says:

    I like the way James Allen articles tend to look at things from unique perspectives and look at ‘the bigger picture’ which can only come from years in the F1 world. I found this a fascinating insightful article. The Ferrari/fia/cvc food for thought.

    I doubt Lewis should go to RedBull unless the contract requires Newey to stay there. 
    I also doubt Alonso would allow Ferrari to let him join him there (how much he would have a say I am unsure of).
    Ferrari seem to operate better with a number one driver. Would Vettel fit in better there? No doubt a good driver and getting better but probably not as good an all rounder as Alonso. 

    Difficult position for Ferrari too. Easy option would be to keep a Massa/ number 2 driver. 

    Also add in Di Resta who definately seems the real deal and Rosberg. Kubica is a good driver but has historically been beaten by Quick Nick.

    Or things stay largely as they are.. 

  16. Marco says:

    This was a great move for Ferrari, Alonso is an outstanding driver, the best all round on the grid. We just want to see him winning now, it’s up to Ferrari to give him the tools to win.

    1. Jo Torrent says:

      only problem is Alonso is hitting the age where performance is going backwards slightly but steadily.

      1. For Sure says:

        Hitting the age? I am not sure man. Michael was very close to at his peak from 30 to 36 and five titles backed it up.

      2. James Allen says:

        Peak is 27-34 in my view, after that depends on the motivation

      3. azac21 says:

        In his case I hope there will be no loss in performance. Any drop in physical fitness should be compensated by an increase in mental strength and experience. As long as he is remains highly motivated of course.

        Something like Ryan Giggs ;)

      4. Krishchar says:

        Jo, Age is not barrier for alonso

        Fernando is the best driver, i have even seen in F1 thus far

        Iam not very big fan of ferrari, although i admire them a lot

        However when alonso joined ferrari in 2010, i became a huge fan of ferrari

        He nearly delivered ferrari the title in his first year with a slower car than RB6

        Iam more than 200 % sure ferrari will surely win atleast 4 titles in the bext 5 years and iam praying and wising ferrari should provide him competitive machinery

        All this hamilton and vettel jibe’s are rubbish

        They are not as good as Alonso is

        Ferrari should feel comfortable and relieved now since they have alonso for next five years

        Come on Fernando you are always the Best

      5. TheLegend says:

        I’m an Alonso fan, but winning 4 about 5 championships seems impossible at these days with such radical rules changes each 2 or 3 seasons.

  17. Now they just need to get Kamui in the 2nd car and they will be set!

  18. Jonno says:

    How sad that a story about Alonso turns into YET another Hamilton knocking festival. Why are so many people obsessed by Lewis? I’m afraid some of them need to get over it. He’s a top level driver and he’s not going away any time soon. Their petty whinges are not going to worry him one little bit.
    Hamilton must be sick and tired of being asked if/when he will be joining Ferrari. By replying “Why not?”, he’s throwing the question back at the journalist.

    1. Peter C says:

      I thought that JA announced that the personal remarks & ‘hate’ comments about individual drivers were to be srictly moderated.

      Well,it doesn’t seem to be working. The bulk of this stuff seems to come from from the Iberian peninsula, unfortunately, although it would not be PC to discuss why.

      Most people have a driver they prefer, but this should not mean making unpleasant remarks about any other driver.

    2. Damian J says:

      It would seem that Lewis is dammed in the eyes of some no matter how he answer’s the provoking questions from journalists seeking a headline.

      1. Jonno says:

        Sickening isn’t it. He gets to the top on ability alone. He didn’t go to the right school or have plenty of family money to help through his early years.

  19. Steven says:

    Hamilton trying to get into Alonsos head with the response, haha!!

  20. Dave C says:

    I think that right now only Alonso can halt Vettel’s charge and if Hamilton thinks Alonso’s Prost then he’s been smoking dodgy stuff, Button is more Prost.

    1. For Sure says:

      Come on Prost is one of the greatest, comparing with Jensen is a bit insulting

  21. CanadaGP says:

    Ferrari being a Latin team values a “family environment” – something Anglos have trouble understanding due to cultural differences. Alonso is also Latin and matches better with Ferrari than any other driver on the grid. He’s not the fastest driver over one lap – Lewis or Seb are – but is relentless over the course of a season. No team understands longevity better than Ferrari.

    The English teams are more transactional and are more than willing to change personnel like investment banks in London. Hamilton is more like a City banker and will drop McLaren if he sees a better deal. Right now, that means Newey. I’m pretty sure Lewis will end up in RBR if RBR decides they can handle a LH/SV pairing. Horner may be unable but Helmut Marko might be. If RBR decides they want Hamilton badly enough – Horner may be sacrificed. He would be more dispensable.

    If LH leaves Macca, I see Hulkenberg as a possibility. The only young driver with a success rate in lower formulae comparable to Lewis is Nico H. People seem to be forgetting about him.

    Mercedes is going after Di Resta or Hulkenberg after Schumacher. Rosberg might even be a possibility for Ferrari, Macca or RBR if Mercedes does not get competitive.

    It would be great to see Kamui in any of the top 3 teams. I think other than Alonso and Hamilton, I see him as the only driver in F1 who currently “drives better than his car.”

    1. Stevie P says:

      “Ferrari being a Latin team values a “family environment” – something Anglos have trouble understanding due to cultural differences.” <- that's quite an interesting opening line! Really? What brings you to that conclusion?

    2. Damian J says:

      Your response seems quite Anglophobic.

      It didn’t take Alonso too long to ditch Renault did it and the last time I checked Alonso was not an “Anglo”!

      Was there also something “Anglo” in the way Ferrari dispened with Kimi’s services???

  22. rogerramjet says:

    A few or your recent posts have hinted at Rosberg and/or his managers attempting to stir up media speculation as to his future with top tier teams. I infer that some may think that the amount of interest from teams is significantly less than reported?

    1. James Allen says:

      Not really. He’s doing a good job, but the only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about, as Oscar Wilde observed.

      1. Dom says:

        Parenthetically, some Premier League players might disagree with Oscar on that point!

  23. Overall, I think it’s a good news, means stability and consistency. But what’s more interesting to me, as James mentioned himself, is whether Alonso is going to race IN F1 or other series, that is, whether Ferrari are really considering the possible breakaway if the engines are 1.6L in 2013. Time will tell, I guess, but I don’t see Alonso racing in a car, different than F1.

  24. Fluebroggle says:

    Any idea what the salary is? £25 million a year? £125 for 5 years. Not bad for a Sunday afternoon drive 19 times a year!

  25. ACB says:

    I think Ferrari made a solid move here, not only do they have one of, if not the best driver on the paddock, this assures that he won’t go elsewhere and become their competition. Not a surprise at all, but what shall be the story is how they will build on Alonso’s longevity with them.

  26. I have no doubt that Lewis would be perfectly happy to drive in the same team as Alonso or Vettel, for that matter, as long as he were guaranteed equal equipment and service.

    We all know that this won’t happen at Ferrari : Alonso will never allow himself to be on equal terms with a top driver again. He just can’t hack it.

    This also suits Ferrari who always seem to want one top driver : They need the no 1 driver to give them direction but, more important, the number 2 to give way whenever ordered to step aside to maximise their chance of winning the WDC.

    1. TheLegend says:

      “Alonso will never allow himself to be on equal terms with a top driver again”.

      2007 season were not exactly what I would call “equal terms”…

      1. Of course, you’re right about the drivers not being equal :

        A double World Champion was spooked by the speed of a rookie driver in his very first season…………….

        As far as I am aware, nobody in a position to know has ever accused McLaren of providing Alonso with inferior equipment or incompetent engineers.

        A driver of Alonso’s experience should have been able to settle into the team and make at least half of it his own.

        Great driver though he is, Alonso’s need to be an outright number one is a weakness not displayed by Vettel, Hamilton or Button.

  27. pert time viewer says:

    history has shown us that contracts in f1 are only as strong as the love between driver and team. However I agree with many on here in that Alonso is prob the most compleat driver on the grid, and not getting younger, so it makes sence for ferrari. I wish them all the best, he seems to be the man to help ferrari back to the top

  28. azac21 says:

    + 1

    Fernando-Ferrari-F1

  29. terryshep says:

    While the WDC is the glamour title, what a team really wants and needs, is the WCC. That’s where the money is for the team and to achieve this you need two drivers who can finish consistently well and bring home the points.

    Ferrari do appear to favour the No 1 driver situation and maybe with their great backing they can afford to concentrate more on the driver’s title. It’s certainly this that the Tifosi appreciate most. Most other teams need to consider their finances more.

    At the moment, RB and McLaren have the best pairings to get points and I think they’ll always have this in mind when filling their seats.

    A final reflection: what a loss Robert K. is to us. Please let him regain his full strength and ability.

  30. Ricardo Consulini says:

    ‘I’ll beat him in a different car’. I tryed my best to like Hamilton, but I don’t think I can.
    Alright..That’s the mentality a WDC driver should have but, before saying thinks like that, he should make sure he can actually beat the other guy. As far as I can remember..Alonso BEAT him in 2010.

    1. I would have thought that an objective survey of knowledgeable F1 fans would place Alonso, Hamilton and Vettel as the three top drivers currently on the grid.

      They have relative strengths and weaknesses but it would really be impossible to say any one of them is definitely “the best”, whether it be judged on speed or racecraft.

      All one could say is that, of the three, Alonso has more F1 experience and therefore the other two are more likely to improve their strategic thinking and racecraft over the next year or two.

      I have a favourite but I enjoy watching all three.

    2. rooks says:

      Too bad you failed to understand this very sentence.

      “I’ll beat him in a different car” means that he would beat him not only in McLaren who Alonso thought were conspiring against him but in any other team, say, in Ferrari.

  31. Bernard says:

    I think it’s a real golden era with such quality drivers to converse about. Top three of Hamilton, Alonso Vettel with class acts like Button, Kubica, Rosberg in close attendance.

    Keeping Hamilton, Alonso, Vettel in different teams makes for great racing as long as all their teams can get them in cars of near equal performance. It will be very interesting to see Vettel perform without the car advantage that he currently has enjoyed for 18 months.

    With a clear performance advantage last season title fight still went the end I don’t think Alonso or Hamilton would have allowed that to happen

  32. PT says:

    This means nothing. Unless the Scuderia makes sweeping changes, Alonso will be the longest serving Ferrari driver without winning anything significant.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Top Tags
SEARCH Scuderia Ferrari
JA ON F1 In association with...
Download the chequered flag podcast today
Download the chequered flag podcast today
Multi award winning Formula One photographer
Multi award winning Formula One photographer