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Alonso: I’m proud of second, without the second best car
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Posted By: James Allen  |  22 Nov 2013   |  1:30 pm GMT  |  250 comments

Fernando Alonso has given a stark appraisal of his season, saying that he is proud to have finished second in the championship, given that he certainly does’t have the second fastest car.

In an edgy finish to the season, on the same Interlagos soil where last year he fought for the world championship in a car which was also not one of the fastest, Alonso and his president are once again making barbs via the media.

Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo in an interview with CNN this week gave Alonso “8 out of 10″ for his season, to which Alonso responded yesterday by saying he would do his talking “on the track”.

Speaking to Italian media Alonso said, “We started out the season with title ambitions; I find myself second in the classification and I’m proud, because I have got this result without having the second fastest car.

“I had a good day in Barcelona, winning in front of my fans.

“July was the critical month; in which we fell behind Red Bull (NB- it was during July that Alonso made the criticisms of the car which led Montezemolo to ‘tweak his ear’). At Silverstone we didn’t get the development package we expected, then we had tough races in Germany and Hungary. At a certain point we realised that the situation had become a concern.

“Why? Ask Domenicali, because it certainly hurt us not being able to use our wind tunnel, one more handicap when trying to beat Red Bull.”

According to a Spanish press agency, he is reported to have said similar things to the Spanish, adding that he had the “seventh or eighth fastest car” this year, but this site has not been able to verify those quotes yet.

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250 Comments
  1. John Marshall says:

    This marriage seems more than a bit strained at this point. Next season could see a lot of fireworks, methinks.

    1. radohc says:

      Alonso – if not WDC 2014 – definitely will be out of Ferrari for 2015, assuming in Mclaren

      1. Mouse_Nightshirt says:

        If McLaren have another shocker of a season next season, Alonso may have nowhere else to run.

      2. Yago says:

        Alonso can go to whatever team he wants. If McLaren is not in good shape, he can go to Mercedes. They would sign him at any moment. What I am not so sure is if Red Bull would sign him alongside Vettel, but I think they would.

      3. Equin0x says:

        Why’s that? Lotus and Mercedes seems to be a good bet right now in terms of performance, with the Quantum money looking likely to come in they’ll be well funded and Mercedes are a works team on the up and with the supposedly ‘best’ engine for the V6 era so he has plenty of places to run to.

      4. justafan says:

        Although Ferrari have a history of sacking drivers like Prost or Raikkonen they would probably not want to lose the santander money which would move with alonso.

    2. All revved-up says:

      Alonso should move into politics after F1.

      LdM : “I rate Alonso a ‘good’ 8 out of 10″

      Alonso: “I’m proud to finish 2nd in the 7th or 8th best car on the grid”

      Alonso giving it as good as he gets! Brilliant!

      Don’t usually wish anyone poorly, but if Ferrari has a poor result again next year – at least we can enjoy the jabs between LdM and FA.

  2. Fireman says:

    Pretty much talk for a guy who says he’s making his talking on the track :D

    I’m curious, is he really a sore loser or is he just bombarded from all fronts by the Spanish press, hence the plethora of dumb comments (maybe taken out of context)?

    1. AlexD says:

      Sorry, sir. What do you expect him to say? Where would Ferrari be if not Alonso in the last 4 years?

      Yes, he tells the truth…he doesn’t have the best car. I think his 2012 performance is the best I have seen from any driver to date. He was shockingly good, but it did not work with the car.

      I am not trying to judge whether or not he should keep it to himself or say what he feels, but I can definitely say that he is frustrated to always be second and never have a car during the entire season that is on par with Red Bull. We all know it that Ferrari is behind Red Bull, Mercedes and Lotus. Even Sauber did a better job lately.

      Alonso or Massa are not the problem in Ferrari. They do not design the car. You need to find the problem somewhere else and you need to fix it.

      1. Fireman says:

        Yes yes yes, I know. He’s mostly done a proper job and I applaud him for that. But all this “I’m the moral champion” talk over and over again is just pathetic. I’m happy Ferrari saw that concentrating polishing one guys ego isn’t going to get them very far.

      2. AlexD says:

        and what will take them far? Alonso isn’t exactly approach jurnos and saying….can you please record these words. You do not know the context and what was asked and what he really said. Yes sure….he has a huge ego…as does Vettel. See what happen with Vettel if he will not be able to win for 4 years and will never get the best car again.

        Ferrari should focus on their real problem – SLOW CAR

      3. Die scuderia says:

        I agree with you here AlexD. Alonso does try his best and honestly we haven’t delivered the car in these last few years. We have to design a competitive car and bring updates that produce significant advantages, end of story. This season could have been better if it wasn’t for the tire change as we were fairly competitive then. Maybe it could have been better for teams to split with the tire compounds (2012 vs 2013) and each team to use the rubber they felt comfortable with. But then…

        DS

      4. veeru says:

        if you were suggesting that they hired kimi as a strong reply to Fernando’s comments, all I can say is “wait for it”

        kimi is an excellent world champion. but he can do no better than Fernando in a bad car.

        mind you, I did not say, he can do no better than Fernando in a good car — anyways we will know it next year

      5. clyde says:

        @fireman
        polishing or not they would not have got so far without Alonso an that’s a fact the car has been s**t for the last 4 years ….

      6. Fireman says:

        Sorry guys, Ferrari hasn’t been exactly a slow car these recent years. Not to the extent Alonso wants you to believe. I’m criticizing his attitude and how he portrays himself for the media, not his performances on the track, which have been most of the time great.

      7. Ricardo says:

        Actually I think Alonso always distorts thing slightly to look better. He says he doesn’t have the second best car. True. But he had it, perhaps even the best car for the first five race and his tally also comes from those days. Before he had said the tire change ruined his possibilities when in fact Ferrari was already struggling in Monaco and Silverstone. Yes he is very fast and has a great fighting spirit and perhaps second place is a great achievement but I also notice that, apart from 2010 (when in my opinion he had his best season with Ferrari and not last year like many believe) he always seems to drop his performance towards the end of the season. Blame Ferrari’s lack of development if you like but it is at least odd that in the last seven races or so from last year he scored little more points than Massa who in some occasions had to let him stay ahead when he was trashing the Brazilian in the first half.

      8. Fireman says:

        I completely agree with you. That’s why he seems like a sore loser.

      9. Rockie says:

        “I think his 2012 performance is the best I have seen from any driver to date.”

        I guess you are not watching the current season then, or you started watching F1 in 2010.

      10. KRB says:

        Umm, it’s much easier to look good when you’re driving a dominant car. Vettel no doubt has had a very good year.

        But you can’t compare that to what Alonso was able to do with the car he had last year. He, and he alone, was hauling it to positions that the car had no right to be in.

      11. Equin0x says:

        KRB I do question your comments…

  3. James says:

    Oh Come on, Ferrari was very good for first 6-7 races and have been consistent all thru(May not be in Qualy,but certainly in races). Mercs had issues until they sort out the tyres. Probably Lotus might have been a tad better than Ferrari, but as we know Lotus had other ideas for Kimi.

    I appreciate the effort, but not the boasting.

    1. Anil Parmar says:

      Spain was round 5, they have been very poor since then. Good strategy got Alonso podiums at silverstone and Singapore though.

      Interestingly they have actually had the second fastest car at the lower downforce tracks this year (canada, monza and spa).

      1. Stig says:

        Aus: Best car, thrown away by strategy.
        Mal: Second best car, thrown away.
        Chi: Best car.
        Bah: Second best car, thrown away.
        Spa: Best car.
        Mon: ?
        Can: Second best car, could pass Ham easily on the track…
        Eng: Third best car.
        Ger: Third best car.
        Hun: ?
        Bel: Second best car.
        Ita: Second best car.
        Sin: Second best car. Had the same pace on a 2-stop as Ham and Ros on a 3-stop…

        Until Singapur Alonso clearly had the second best car…later, others could not score either…
        For me it is nonsense to say he did not have the second best car over the season.

      2. Frank says:

        I see you point however…

        Surely the second best car has been the other Redbull, so where is Webber on the classification?
        Not even third….

        The guy did not make any pole the whole season, finish 2nd is a great accomplishment.

      3. Shane says:

        I think you need to look to the overall performance of the team to determine the car’s ranking. The “stats” you allude to are the combination of the car and the driver. All season Ferrari have been behind on raw performance. RBR, Mercedes and Lotus have all been quicker cars.

      4. KRB says:

        For the most part I agree with how you’ve pegged it. I can’t say that Ferrari were best in AUS … they couldn’t 2-stop, while the Lotus could.

        That’s pretty much my only gripe though.

        Grosjean has only just overtaken Massa in the DWC standings (he went ahead after IND, and only then on countback), and Lotus is declaring him a budding superstar. Massa, meanwhile, was let go by Ferrari.

        Post-Monza, the Ferrari has been 4th best, but Alonso’s trying to stretch that out over the entire season. Guess he’s playing on our tendency to give more recent results more weight when reviewing an entire season. This is evident in any “Best Songs of the Year/Decade/Century” list ever made.

      5. Rachael says:

        But there are two Red Bulls, so even if he had the second best car, he’s still looking at third place at best.

      6. Sasidharan says:

        Yes, he had the 2nd best car till Singapore. And he is talking in Interlagos, so can anybody continue rating the car for the rest of the races and take an average for the season. If its not greater then 3, then Alonso is right, otherwise he is talking rubbish.

      7. clyde says:

        are you watching the 2013 season or what :-)

      8. Yago says:

        Thanks for doing an analysis instead of just stating things. I know it requires more time to write it down! However there are corrections to make.

        Corrections:
        Aus: Second best
        Bah: Third best in the race, which is what we are talking about right?
        Mon: Fourth best.
        Eng: I’m going to say fourth best, but probably worse than that.
        Ger: Fourth best.
        Hun: Fourth best.
        Sin: Fourth best.

        So no, Ferrari was not the second best until Singapore I fear… Ferrari was probably the second best until Silverstone. That would be more accurate.

    2. Tyemz says:

      “Oh come on. The ferrari was very good for the first 6-7 races”.
      As if Alonso said something different. The article quotes him “July was the critical month; in which we fell behind RedBull”. The original article may not have been written in English but if I understand “fall behind” correctly, then Fernando captured the situation perfectly. We must have been watching a different F1 if we believe the Ferrari was right up there with the Bulls, Mercs and Lotuses in the second part of the season.

      1. James says:

        See Merc,lotus had similar issues, they weren’t always competitive. Its not like they were always ahead of Ferrari after july. In low down-force circuits like spa and monza Ferrari excelled. Its a mix bag for all 3 teams we are talking about. But to boast himself like that, well good luck with that.

  4. Paul D says:

    I feel a little sorry for Fernando. His talent level merits more than 2 WDC’s and you can sense his fustration. His two ‘near miss’ seasons in 2010 and 2012 were very impressive.

    However, I can’t help but feel he needs to question is attitude and judgement sometimes. If he had handled the Mclaren situation in a more mature way and worked through the issues, he could have walked away with 2 more titles in 2007 and 2008.

    Also Ferrari’s flaws (particularly in terms of Management and Strategic Direction) have been evident for some time. His destiny is in his own hands and he should have recognised this earlier.

    At the age he’s at now he won’t be getting any quicker. In fact he’s approaching the age where drivers tend to lose a couple of tenths.

    I now find it hard to see Alonso ever winning another title.

    1. Benalf says:

      “If he had handled the Mclaren situation in a more mature way and worked through the issues, he could have walked away with 2 more titles in 2007 and 2008..”
      What 2007 season did you watch? Alonso was backslashed by Dennis shortly after the Monaco post-race. Dennis gambled to support Hamilton on his rookie season dismissing the fact that he hired the current world champion to get Macca back to winning titles. How can you say Alonso could have won ’07 DWC if the team was playing against him? Do you think Alonso could have finished his contract at Macca winning or losing ’07 WC? Looks like you’re out of your depth. Having Dennis played his drivers the right way -ie support the ALonso to win and give Hamilton room to build up experience and maturity- Macca could have easily won ’07, ’08, even ’09 with Alonso. But yes, he’s spaniard, Hamilton is a sensational Brit racer and media, marketing and showbiz was more important than winning titles. IMO, things were so twisted as Macca in ’07 that even now Whitmarsh would welcome Fernando back to the team. Crap!

      1. KRB says:

        Alternate universe talk. Why would McLaren sign Alonso, and then trash him? It makes NO sense. It’s not like they had a clearly faster car; it was nip ‘n’ tuck with Ferrari all year. So they didn’t have the “luxury” of favouring one driver over the other. When Alonso went nuclear, the team should’ve benched him. That would’ve been Alonso’s own doing though. Instead they kept racing, and the whole thing blew up in the team’s face.

        I think Alonso realizes now, after the 2011 season, that he let his paranoia get the better of him in ’07.

      2. trev says:

        [mod]
        Alonso met his match in a rookie and couldn’t handle it.
        That’s in the past now. Lets see how the Ferrari rivalry goes next year, should be good.

      3. Sri says:

        Both of you guys are doing a disservice to dismiss Kimi’s performance in 2007. May be if he had not won in 2007, he would have been motivated enough to win in 2008? So all these ifs and buts prove nothing …Alonso could have been 4xWDC or (5x), Kimi could have been 3xWDC (2005, 2007 and 2008 – had the development went his direction), Lewis could have been 3xWDC (2007, 2008, 2012- if he had less car issues) etc. At the end of the day, what we have is the results to deal with, and most of us will prefer to stick with that and not with some fanciful plausible scenarios to suit one’s own favorite driver.

      4. Martin says:

        2008 with Kimi was much more likely to be about Santander money. If Alonso had stayed with McLaren in 2008, there wouldn’t have been the moves by Ferrari to sign Alonso, bringing Santander cash from McLaren. Kimi’s motivation wasn’t the issue. Car set up during 2008 is a more contentious point in its influence on Kimi’s qualifying pace, which in some races influenced where he finished. You could add 2003 to Kimi’s potential championships. But your last sentence is spot on.

      5. justafan says:

        Alonso could have won the 07 title if he avoided to destroy his car in Japan or to cheat in Hungary.

  5. OscarF1 says:

    Definitely it hasn’t been the 2nd or third fastest car in the last stages of the season but during the first months it was a rather competitive one (perhaps something to do with the tyres that were changed…)

    Here’s a link to the Spanish interview:
    http://motor.as.com/motor/2013/11/21/formula_1/1385060732_418011.html

    1. Manuel says:

      That link makes no mention of Domenicali and Alonso it’s actually quite PC in what he says.

      It’s also mostly not a direct transcript of what was said, so it’s difficult to judge whether is an interview or a re-hash of someone else’s material.

      1. No that Politically Correct, Manuel, not that Politically Correct. I quote from AS:

        “…Orgulloso de este subcampeonato porque lo he logrado con el séptimo u octavo coche de la parrilla…”

        That is:

        “…I am proud to be the runner-up as I made it with the seventh or eighth car of the grid…”

        That was placed inside quotation marks by a journalist that was actually there.
        I find it pretty harsh to put it mildly. Pretty harsh. I even have trouble trying to remember any Ferrari driver having said such a thing.

        Fernando Alonso is paid a fortune by his employer, putting up with a poor car is part of the job. Personally I do not find these statements acceptable. Can you imagine Schu or Kimi saying such a thing? I cannot either.

        President Montezemolo should think over if the man from Oviedo is worth the hassle.

      2. puffing says:

        “…Orgulloso de este subcampeonato porque lo he logrado con el séptimo u octavo coche de la parrilla…”

        And, so what? Not politically correct? Has Alonso no right to speak his mind out? One day we say that pilots are too mute, next day we bash them for speaking their opinions publicly.

        No objection to that Alonso’s remark on my humble side. It’s nothing but the truth. Not forgetting in addition that LdM had recently and publicly marked Alonso with a “8 out of 10″. Stupid man, such a bad boss. IMO, of course.

      3. puffing, the last thing I thought I would have to do was to argue with a Spanish Alonso fan at an English Speaking forum. Tough luck, I am a Spaniard too, so I am pretty used to the kind of arguments you put forward.
        The 8 out of 10 is well deserved after Alonso’s mistake at Malaysia, being overtaken twice at Loews, and a rather poor quelifying performance.
        Shall I remind you that Mr. Di Montezemolo saved Ferrari from bankrupcy in 1991 when he was appointed president? Or that he hired Jean Todt and Michael Schumacher?
        Shall I stress that the German went through pretty hard times at Ferrari and never uttered a word of discontent?
        How dare you call the man who saved Ferrari “stupid man” or “bad boss”?
        Did you know that it is very likely that if Enzo Ferrari was still alive he would have sacked the Asturian after what happenned at the Hungaroring?
        Yes you are the epitome of the average Alonso follower in our country. Very much so.

  6. Juan V says:

    I really understand ALO, the ferrari boss is crazy making those kind om comments. In the four years ALO has been driving for the team ferrari has failed every year….ALO has been supberb!
    Ánimo Alonso!

  7. Jim says:

    Clearly the rift is bigger than we all know, otherwise bringing Kimi in, makes no sense. They will inevitably fall out and Alonso will be off at the end of the season, back to a Hamilton free McLaren…

    1. Davexxx says:

      Indeed. Alonso once said Ferrari was the team he always wanted to go to, and would end his career with – but he was assuming Ferrari would be as good as they once were. I wouldn’t blame him at all for having to eat his words and jump ship (again) when so many former-great teams are struggling these days.

      1. MISTER says:

        Alonso said this year that he would like to extend and end his career at Ferrari. This year! After 3 years of having the 3rd – 4th fastest car. What are you talking about?

    2. Benalf says:

      I agree. Fernando hasn’t been an illuminati when it comes to choose the best team to go to. I read once that he always dreamt to drive for Macca and retire at Ferrari. What a nightmare of achieving his first dream as a 2-time WC from a humble team and being sidelined when he was on top of the leaderboard by a market-based team boss! Hi second dream is even worse. It seems to me that he follow his dreams without analyzing the human resources the team has at that particular historic moment. Since the italianization project by LdM, Ferrari hasn’t been able to dominate any season. They were very close in ’08 and ’10 but the team strategy/work screwed both Felipe and Fernando up WC’s. There’s no a clear path from LdM to establish a team with very specific/people whose talents can be top of the sport to solve Ferrari’s lack of performance on medium to high downforce circuits. They started to bring new people in but it seems more like getting everyone available gambling that that combination of talent will fix the team designs issues. they bet on Pat Fry and so far he hasn’t delivered. It’s been a while since F1 lack of enough aero talent to have more than two teams at the top each season. I don’t think Ferrari will be at the top next year, especially since their wind tunnel is not fully understood and requires certain amount of time to get the best out of it.
      So, the time of dreams for Fernando are over, and if he really wants to race to WC the best think he can do is move back to McLaren and retire there. He should have done right after 2010 season and now, he’s 3 year older; not a worse driver but there’s more talent to compete against now. Kind of sad waste of talent..

      1. trev says:

        Clearly Fernando’s true racing skills were found wanting the day he couldn’t overtake Petrov. I don’t think he has got over bottling that world title.

      2. Ricardo says:

        I feel somewhat the same. It is very easy to say the strategist blew it but wasn’t he assuming Alonso would pass Petrov? I mean, I remember the Spanish tv commentator surely was, that is, at first….

      3. Yago says:

        To both of you:

        Alonso had to pass Petrov AND Rosberg to become world champion. Ferrari was running a high downforce set up to do a good qualifying, so they had one of the worst top speeds. Funnily enough, the Renault and the Mercedes had the highest top speeds on the grid.

        Even better, Hamilton with NEW tyres could not get past Kubica who had not stopped yet, and was with OLD tyres. You can see how easy was to overtake at Abu Dhabi 2010… So please, as ever, get the facts right.

  8. Anil Parmar says:

    He’s been much more consistent in his machinery than Lewis and Kimi have this year and thats what has given him second. Impressive stuff, but Ferrari need to step up.

    1. Joel says:

      That Ferrari that everyone is talking down has a bullet-proof reliability. Also, on the race day, it is the 2nd fastest on a consistent basis.
      May be Alonso should do more to help his team mate (may be share some of his setups). Then, he could’ve claimed to be “proud” to have helped the team be “second” in WCC. That’s what a team like Ferrari would like to hear.

      1. MISTER says:

        What are you talking about? Each driver has pretty much his own setups and preferences. Some drivers want more front end, others less. The gearing is different from driver to driver depending also on their strategy for the race.

        Having good reliability doesn’t help much if the car is slow. Reliability gets you to finish races, but not win them. When your competition has a few problems in a season, like Vettel for example, and has 2 DNF in one season but wins 8 races in a row..is much better than finish all races, like Kimi pretty much, and end up with one win in a season and 3rd in the championship.

        Every driver would take the faster but less reliable car any day. I guarantee you that.

      2. Giorgio says:

        and Kimi vs Alo .05 season?

      3. Wade Parmino says:

        Depends on just how unreliable the unreliable car is. The McLaren was better than the Ferrari last year (possibly even the Red Bull) but was terribly unreliable. Hamilton should easily have been at least second in the championship last year if not for technical failures. Given this situation, I’d say Alonso was probably happy with having the Ferrari as opposed to the McLaren last season.

      4. Anil says:

        All the cars have amazing reliability. Macca had some issues in 2012 (which really hurt Lewis) but reliability is pretty much a non factor nowadays.

        You can argue RB have suffered more than others but they’ve also had comfortably the fastest car which over the last 4 years has been by far the most important thing.

    2. Harshad says:

      More consistent compared to Lewis and Kimi?
      Ferrari as a team for sure they are putting him on better strategy in general throughout the season(except Malaysia).
      Whereas Lewis has been hampered by tyre issues….
      and Kimi by some poor strategy by Lotus & bad luck.
      Regarding Kimi,
      1) We all know about Monaco (perez incident)
      2) Canada–>Team couldn’t fix the brake issues and also underfuel him.
      3) India–>Poor strategy, made worse by asking him to save fuel, also he was brake issues?
      4) Silverstone—>They chose not to pit him under the safety car, and as a result lose P2 to finish P5
      5) Spa—>Visor tear off results in break issue

      To me Kimi/Lewis as drivers has had a far better season than Alonso, but they have been hampered by some problems with their car and bad luck.
      Compare that with Alonso’s reliability issue in Bahrain and team error in Malaysia.

      But OfCourse opinions differ!!

      1. Elie says:

        Most people with more than half a brain would suggest that this year is Vettel, Raikkonen have been the best and Hamilton, Rosberg and Alonso a bit behind.

        I predicted last year that Alonso will struggle this year because you cannot be 100% all the time and it does weigh in on you – that’s been evidenced by his “words” with the team’

      2. Anil says:

        I adore Kimi but he hasn’t been near Alonso over the course of the season. Since the change to 2012 spec tyres he’s struggled a lot, especially with generating front end grip (coincidently the same issue he had in 2008). In the first part of the season he was very strong though, I agree.

      3. Elie says:

        But even when he was struggling he still ended up on the podium didn’t he. Also you forget Lotus went to long wheelbase car it helped on speed circuit like Monza but not as much on normal circuits. The minute he switched back at Abu Dhabi he qualified 4th. So he obviously found the best set up for the tyres at last–!REALLY unfortunate he missed the last 2 races because I truly believe he would have been challenging Seb–Remember all this with undoubted back paid and no pay !

      4. Elie says:

        Btw Fernando was not that great this year. Felipe was quicker on a few tracks this year including Brazil before the
        Penalty. I think Fernando was a 7.5 at Best this year last year he was at least a 9.

  9. Jock Ulah says:

    End-of-Season – ‘tweak’ sport continues . . .
    Go for it, Fernando . . .

    Ferrari-red rag, loads of bull . . .
    Luca is about to charge!

  10. Ticketyboo says:

    He’s (FA) spot-on although these remarks I suspect allude to a more significant underlying issue, that of the immediate future of Alonso within Ferrari. LdM came out with the scathing chastisement of Alonso after his comments about the car, and fair enough when you’re in a team ‘sport’, however the recent remarks from LdM were quite uncalled for and so we have this very public breakdown in respect.. All of this and now the shortcomings of team principle Domenicali are drawn in to it (ashtray – motorbike come to mind), not at all good for the motivation of the mere mortals in the garage or back at the factory trying their best under poor leadership. All-in-all a bit of a sorry mess. I’ll be surprised if FA doesn’t now take a sabbatical next season to then come back with McLaren and the prancing horse is left to deal with the charms of their newest signing – the winners in all of this… a certain F Massa and R Smedley; well out of it. Ferrari are in danger of management lead implosion.

    1. “Ferrari are in danger of management lead implosion.”

      +1 Believe the phrase (in Spanish) would be something to the effect of: ‘La historia se repeata’ – and apologies if the spellings aren’t up to date.

      Thanks once again James, for the information in this article and the ‘background’ of the so-called “Lotus” team’s financial and management maginations driving good staff and drivers to greener pasures. Folks shoulda reallized that buying a name in court doesn’t include any sort of a DNA transfer.

      1. Snailtrail says:

        Staff jumping from Lotus to Ferrari is like jumping from a sinking ship onto another that has run aground…

    2. Benalf says:

      I agree in most. I am afraid LdM is more of a class politician than president of a R&D racing team. Domenicali is way too low profile to be a team director. You have to have a figure like Todt or Briatore to really push the team forward and make brillian tactical decisions during race weekends. To be fair, Domenicali has improved this season -except from Malaysia and some pit-stop managements- but in terms of leadership he’s lacking.
      In regards to sabbatical, that’s something Fernando can not afford, he just needs to leave the same way he left Macca with an ongoing contract. Unfortunately, there’s no competitive place to go to. The only reasonable spot available is Lotus but besides the Renault engines I wouldn’t be so sure that’s the right move

    3. Ticketyboo

      But that`s just it, a truly great F1-Champion builds the team. What Alonso has been doing for the last couple of years is not called building.

      His main focus has been to make sure everybody knows how great he is. To achieve this he has been expressing himself in a way aimed at devaluing both his own team and other drivers on the grid.

      This is bound to backfire at some point, and it has allready started. Last year he kept sniping at Vettel, but this year he understands that`s not an option. Ìt`s impossible to take shots at Vettel the way he`s performing. That leaves the team, and he has been taken shots at Ferrari.

      That`s a dangerous thing to do though and might possibly be damaging for Alonso in the long run. DiMontezemolo is not a guy that accepts dissidents in his organization and you need harmony in a team to be successfull in F1.

      For all his greatness (and there is no doubt Alonso is a great driver) he has some weaknesses to. I`m starting to believe that Alonsos biggest weakness is his ego. I think his ego is partly to blame for the controversy he`s encountered in F1 and he`s probably lost some titles due to this.

      Schumacher had four very tough years at Maranello before he won the title for Ferrari. But he never blamed the team in public, he just dug his heels in and kept going. That`s the kind of driver diMontezemolo wants. That`s te kind of driver any team wants as they help bulid confidence in an organization.

      I also think Alonso is starting to realize what a formidable opponent Vettel really is. I got a feeling that untill the beginning of this season Alonso thought he could beat Vettel in a slower car. But this year Alonso had the best car at the beginning of the season and still couldn`t keep ut with Vettel in the first part of the season. Then Red Bull improved and Vettel went on a winning-spree rarely seen in F1. I think Alonso now realizes that he needs a car that is at least as good as Vettel`s to beat him.

  11. Chema Martin says:

    An amazing driver whose minutes with the press usually work wonders to get people frustrated with him.

    They say he’s a very confident individual, but I can’t understand why he needs to pad himself on the back so often.

    He’s absolutely right about one thing, though, and that’s that Ferrari truly need to get their act together with upgrades and aero work if they want to even have a shot at competing against RBR.

    1. Antti says:

      Exactly how I feel. I don’t understand why Fernando must always be talking about how much better he is than the car. Is he really that insecure? Everyone knows he’s very good, one of the best, he doesn’t need to keep on telling people that.

      1. Kirk says:

        Agree, he is a very good driver, I’m not sure if amazing as he as this case always blames the car if he doesn’t get the results or elevates himself if he has good results and people falls into that, It would be interest to remember if he has said sometimes that his car is good, probably he is not insecure, but has an ego bigger than the whole Ferrari.

  12. Rafael says:

    I’m a huge Alonso fan, but I myself would give Fernando an 8/10: 1 point deduction for Malaysia and for some of his patchy qualifying performances, the other point simply bec. there’s always room for improvement.

    As for Ferrari (LdM and Domenicali, specifically), I would give them a 5 out of 10 for just getting by (ever since they took over) and winning a race here and there (thanks mainly to Alonso). Fernando needs to get out of there, the team is closer to returning to their decay from the late ’80s – early ’90s, than to their dominance in the ’00s.

  13. John Bond says:

    Can anyone confirm that Alonso will certainly drive for Ferrari next year?

    1. Random 79 says:

      Unless something drastic happens he will be there in 2014, but there’s a big, big question mark over where he’ll end up in 2015.

    2. Rob Newman says:

      Yes, i can confirm!

    3. Richard says:

      Contract won’t allow him to leave unless both parties come to a diffrent agreement.

    4. KRB says:

      He extended his contract thru 2016 in 2011.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/13452839

      Of course, I would assume there are performance clauses, that if not met would allow him to leave. But he’s been 2nd the last two years, so those wouldn’t have been breached. So he’s there for 2014. If the 2014 Ferrari is a dog though, perhaps he has a get-out clause he can trigger then.

      Off topic, do you own a villa in Orlando perchance?

  14. James says:

    Ferrari have 9 podiums this year, with Alonso second only behind Vettel in podiums, yet apparently the car is fit only to fight the Marussia’s.

    What a samurai.

    1. H.Guderian says:

      Exactly!!!
      +1.000.000

    2. Iwan says:

      When he says “8th or 9th fastest” he is taking into account that every team has two cars

      1,2 RBR
      3,4 Lotus (currently, but Merc earlier this year)
      5,6 Merc (currently, but Lotus earlier this year)
      7,8 Ferrari

      The “9th” comes from a previous interview where he said they were now also fighting Force India and Sauber.

      A Samurai (who can do math and punch above his weight) indeed.

      1. Kirk says:

        But that is in some parts of the calendar, overall he has had the second fastest car (ok third if we get the two RB), in the beginning of the season was similar to RB. And Sauber and FI are not faster than the Ferrari.

    3. Anil Parmar says:

      Well as a ferrari fan I’ll admit they have been behind Lotus and Merc since Spain. At the lower downforce tracks though we seem to jump ahead of them. Thankfully he salvaged a podium at singapore, which is impressive given how far ferrari were were off the pace.

    4. Benalf says:

      Fernando comments are a reply for LdM 8/10 score to him. Plain and simple. Why trying to do technical analysis with respect the other teams?
      Since July, Ferrari got worse in qualifying trim and they didn’t improve -w.r.t. the other top teams- race pace. So basically the car development failed since Silverstone. No way you can win a WC if your car doesn’t improve at the same rate as the other top ones, period.
      Ferrari was unable to get the car performance of the first races and the tire situation literally killed them. So, I would also put the FIA, RBR fillibustering, and Pirelli on the blame list along with LdM and Domenicali.
      As for Fernando performances, he’s still lacking the magic touch of making a perfect lap in qualifying. That’s old news but I am very sure that having a car with better qualy preformance he can consistently be on the first two rows. During race days, he does an excellent job, consistently.

  15. fox says:

    Alonso is not interested in any secondary prides, he aims to be first and hopefully he will be first again.

    In Renault he was less experienced or complete, but won two titles. He shifted Schumacher to retirement. Now he is much stronger but car sucks (and sometimes team strategy). He does few mistakes.

    So it is a question of good enough car to be first again. Until it happens he will not be proud of anything else. Look at his emotions – definitely something else than being proud.

    1. Dutch Johnny says:

      He shifted Schumacher into retirement? 2005 wasn’t a contest due to the superiour michelin tyres. 2006 was nip and tuck between them. Schumacher made more mistakes yes but look at Schumacher q2 time in suzuka or brazil 2006. I am sure Schumacher would have won the 07 and 08 seasons.

      1. alk says:

        Johnny, these sore supporters have a short memory (illegal mass damper)
        Also some analyst refuse to note a lot of alonso’s success was circumstantial!
        I could write up a whole list from last season!

      2. Rockie says:

        Reasoning does not come into it when they want to denigrate Vettel and Redbulls achievements.
        Its unfathomable Vettel retired from the lead in Korea 10 when he was on course to win the cahampionship @ Abu-Dhabi but no one talks about that its Ferrari lost Alonso the championship

  16. JF says:

    Nice bit of self-promotion by the master of self-promotion. The Ferrari was not the fastest car this year, but with so much ebb and flow between Merc, Ferrari, and Lotus it is difficult to judge who was second fastest. Judging from qualifying, I would say Ferrari tied for for third place with Lotus. Merc and RedBull have been the qualifying pace setters, Merc early-mid season, RedBull mid-late season. In terms of race pace, I would think that Ferrari and Lotus were pretty equal second over the year, Merc had issues early on but caught up, and lotus had mid season dip, while Ferrari was fairly constant. The overall balance seemed to shift among these three teams over the year, while RedBull kept on getting faster. Ferrari certainly did not have the 7 or 8th fastest car as quoted above.

    1. Yago says:

      Sorry, but very bad analysis. On average, Lotus has been faster than Ferrari by a considerable amount. Mercedes has been much faster on pure pace, but they had problems with race pace before their illegal test. After that, and specially after the tyre change, they have been faster than Ferrari. Since Singapore the gap to Ferrari has been big. From Red Bull I am not even going to talk.

      So the competitive order on average trough the season is:
      Red Bull
      Lotus
      Mercedes
      Ferrari

      If you do the sum (not hard mathematics, I think you will be able) the Ferraris have been the 7th and 8th fastest cars on the grid. That is what Alonso wanted to say, and nothing else.

      1. Joel says:

        No way Alonso’s Ferrari is the 7th or 8th fastest. In terms of race pace, it was probably the 2nd fastest behind Vetter’s RedBull. As you know, RB and Ferrari have a No1 in the team – the other car is usually a handicapped one. Lotus beat them in a few races because of they being soft on their tyres and Mercs had a peak in performance in the middle (Hungary, Silverstone, Monoco), otherwise they were always going backwards in race.

      2. Yago is the typical Alonso fan to be found at Spanish forums. His written English is a hint that he thinks in my language (I am a Spaniard, but, lo and behold, a Kimi Fan, yes I am bracing myself for next year, you cannot imagine how it is over here…)
        This is interesting for all readers as they will understand why the few all-time F1 fans in my country are desperately waiting for “Year 1 after Alonso” ;)
        Cheers!

      3. Brad says:

        Goodness gracious Sami, how on earth are you going to manage next year LOL!!!!

      4. Kirk says:

        Sorry, but your analysis has some problems as Alonso also is just trying to look better as always, you are not taking into account that the Ferrari was faster than Lotus an Mercedes in the first half part of the season, he could got even more points but he had two problematic races (the accident were his front wing got damaged and the DRS locked problem), mean while, Kimi was in a consecutive races in the points so, in that first half season even with those problems the Ferrari was capable to score more points, so ok, maybe you are right and it was not the third fastest car, but overall he has had the third best car because is more reliable than the others Ferrari rarely has mechanical issues.

      5. Yago says:

        Yes I’m taking all that into account. What I am not taking into account are subjective judgements on Alonso’s reasons to say what he said, which you are doing, and that doesn’t let some of you to do a proper analysis I fear.

        On the reliability thing, can you tell me why the Ferrari has been more reliable than the Lotus this year? Facts please.

      6. Kirk says:

        The facts are that Lotus has had some DNF because of mechanical issues and Ferrari any, those are the facts, on the other side, you are doing exactly the same thing that you said against the others, you have a subjective opinion about Alonso and why Ferrari is the 7th fastest car, JF said something about Ferraris place in the fastest ranking, then you said is wrong based not on facts but in your merely opinion, so, why is different what you said? is the same but only changing the teams order to favor your subjective opinion so you are as right as JF.

      7. Yago says:

        Write down Kimis dnfs or technical faillures over Alonso’s please. Then you will put facts on the table.

        On the subjective opinion, all I can say is: whatever… If you want to believe I am biased you are free to thinks so, but in my post there were no evidences on that as far as I can tell, contrarily to your post or those of many others in this thread.

      8. JF says:

        Can’t agree with you, other than for RedBull. As I said, I don’t think one can assign a clear ranking for Merc, Ferrari and Lotus as all have been fastest or slowest at various times. On average then I would say they have been practically equal over the season.

      9. Yago says:

        Since Canada, there have been only two races were ferrari was arguably faster (race pace, see that I don’t even mention qualifying…) than mercedes and lotus, which are spa and monza. So those are already 11 from 19 races were mercedes and lotus were clearly faster. Add monaco, and we have 12 from 19. The remaining races, previous to monaco, ferrari was pretty even on average to lotus (faster in spain and malaysia and similar in china, and slower in australia and barhein). So we have 14 from 19 races were ferrari was slower than lotus. Mercedes were considerably slower in race pace that first six races, but much faster over one lap, which is a big boost.

        As you see, if you do an analysis, you have the answer. If you don’t believe or remember the ralative performances of some races, all I can say is re watch them! However live timing is necessary to have a clear picture.

      10. JF says:

        Sorry Yago. Your argument remains subjective which supports my point. There is no clear argument for this other than red bull are clearly fastest, esp in Vettels hands.

      11. Yago says:

        No JF, my argument is not subjective. But it could be wrong of course! I am spanish, but I am not a “typical Alonso fan to be found at Spanish forums”. So sorry for that Sami!

      12. JF says:

        Nice try. See below.

  17. James says:

    When Perez, Button & Sutil are overtaking you at Monaco in those McLaren & Force India rocketships it’s clear your car is dreadful despite you driving beautifully…

    1. Richard says:

      He had debris underneath his car, and Monaco is the worst track to have that. So yeah he drove beautifully.

      1. James says:

        He didn’t get debris under the car until Perez hit Raikonnen, long after he’d been passed by 3 drivers in worse cars at a track you ‘cant overtake’ at…

    2. Me says:

      …how do you know how he drove?…

  18. C Lin says:

    I know Alonso is frustrated but the whinning is getting tiresome. Yes, we know you outdrive the car. You are better than the car.

    Let’s hope Ferrari has a better car next year otherwise execute your Plan B.

    1. Rockie says:

      He does not out drive the car its a myth he qualifies poorly then puts the car in its rightful position in the race, I believe Vettel in the Ferrari would qualify better and once you do that the race becomes easier in the same car Massa has qualified on the front row Alonso hasn’t food for thought!

      1. C Lin says:

        Yes, that’s why I wish he would stop whinning…

    2. Tim says:

      Yes, we know you outdrive the car…

      It’s not physically possible to do that.

  19. MattDS says:

    I doubt this. I think overall the Ferrari has indeed been the second best car.

    No, the Ferrari isn’t second best NOW. But during a period it probably was the best overall. Never on single-lap pace, but single lap pace is not everything. The Mercs were blazing fast at one point, but kept going backwards in races.

    The conclusion is, if the Merc and/or the Lotus have been the better cars over the course of the season, then Hamilton and Rosberg and/or Raikkonen and Grosjean have underperformed horribly.

    Take Hamilton and Raikkonen as best scorers for their team. Who here feels they have underperformed in such a manner that they could have gotten second place in the WDC?

    I don’t buy this.

    1. Yago says:

      You will buy it next year, when you compare Alonso to Raikkonen in the same car. I warrantee you!

      1. MattDS says:

        This year is not next year.

        You didn’t answer my question – if the Ferrari wasn’t the second best car over the course of the entire year, then which car was better? Merc? Lotus? Both? Do you think Raikkonen underperformed? Or Hamilton? Or their teammates?

      2. Yago says:

        Both Merc and Lotus were overall better than the Ferrari. Raikkonen drove very good until the tyres changed, then he underperformed. And then he missed two races, so more points missed. Hamilton has had a fluctuating form, trying to adapt to a different car, specially the braking is what has hurt him. So yes, he has not been close to Alonso level.

        Hamilton probably can compete with Alonso with similar machinery, and he has already proved that. But this year he has been not at that level. Raikkonen can not, even if he is at his maximum level, and I believe that will be proved next year.

        On their team mates, Grosjean far from Alonso’s level regarding driving ability, plus he massively underperformed the first half of the season, before the tyre change. Rosberg is very good but not consistent enough at the moment, and he has had some more problems with reliability than the others.

        Is this better?

      3. Yago, the tyres changed and Kimi underperformed?
        Are you serious?
        Finishing third at Singapore with an aching back is underperfoming? Wow! And then second in Korea.
        If that is underperforming by Kimi, I cannot wait to see him competing against Alonso (in case he is not given the sack for his recent statements).
        Yes next year at Ferrari may be really interesting, if I were you I would brace myself.
        You may be surprised.

      4. Brad says:

        Sami, You impress me more with every post I read of you, can’t believe you’re a Spaniard. Yes, and you may very well be right, I’m pulling a wager Kimi will really suprise us

    2. Ben says:

      I completely agree with you. While I am not an Alonso fan I still have the up most respect for him as a driver but I think overall this season the Ferrari was probably the second best car, it was massa underperforming that cost them second in the constructors not the car. I feel the reason Mercedes have got second is because the two drivers have pushed each other. For the most part of the season the Mercedes has been all over the place the place in the race. At the moment the Ferrari is definitely not the second best car though

      1. Joel says:

        Bingo !!!

      2. Rockie says:

        Massa under performing makes Alonso good next year would mark a new beginning and we would see if he’s truly a samurai!

      3. Yago says:

        Amazing that you still need confirmation on Alonso’s skills. I guess after he beats Kimi fair and square next year, you will still need confirmation, as Kimi underperforming for whatever reason will make Alonso look good…

    3. Antti says:

      Had Kimi raced until the end of the season, he might’ve taken the 2nd from Fernando, given the relative strengths of the cars at present. But I’m not saying this to imply that Kimi has underperformed, Lotus had a definite mid-season dip in performance that affected Kimi, and he’s not racing anymore when the car is good again.

    4. Richard says:

      Pretty good first five races, pretty damn awfull the last 14 ones, nah overal is hasn’t been the 2nd best.

  20. Sebee says:

    Seriously, what’s going on with this back and forth?

    Can’t these two recognize that both of them are at fault.

    Alonso, you can’t win a WDC if you’re #2 is outqualifying you 50% of the time.
    Luca, you can’t win the WDC if you’re car is a few thenths off.

    What is the need between these to to blame one another for lack of success? This is clearly begining of the breakdown of relationship.

    And for the record, not that my opinion is of high value :-), I agree with Luca that Alonso is an 8 out of 10. For his weak quali performances you can easily take 2 point off alone.

    1. Dan says:

      vettel was out qualified 8 times by mark webber last year.

      1. Sebee says:

        How is that quali score this year?

        And how many times did Mark out qualified Vettel in the second half of the year when the WDC was won?

      2. KRB says:

        2012? What’s second half? After the summer break? If so, we get:

        BEL, KOR, ABU, and BRA. So it was only VET 5-4 WEB.

      3. Dan says:

        the championship is won over the entire year. Congrats to vettel for dominating the oldest driver on the grid in his retirement year. mark of a true legend.

      4. Sebee says:

        Oh boy…

        Maybe he crushed him in Multi21, not dominated.

    2. Rob Newman says:

      Luca knows they can’t win when the car is a few tenths off but the driver said even if the car is slow, he can bring a few tenths which didn’t happen. That is Luca’s gripe.

      1. Sebee says:

        So basically kettle scenario?

        I guess we should deal with this childish spat the way all 6 year olds deal with it: Who started it?

        In which case, it’s all Alonso’s fault! :-)

      2. puffing says:

        By no means.

      3. Sebee says:

        Who started it then puffing? Didn’t all of this start with Alonso “bad mouthing” the holy car?

    3. AlexD says:

      and how would you rate his car?

      1. Rob Newman says:

        A race winning car of course!!

      2. Sebee says:

        Rob, I expect accuracy from you.

        MULTIPLE race winning car! The way you put it, it sounds like it won only one.

      3. Sebee says:

        Well, all joking aside, they are in 3rd place in constructors, so 3rd it is.

        However, as with all things F1 it’s not black and white. At start they were on par with best. Then they were about 2nd up to Singapore, and now they are 3rd. Massa’s points haul drops them to 3rd in WCC, but it’s really close in that 2nd spot.

        But here is the kicker Alex. Lewis/Nico aren’t driving with the kind of #1 treatment Alonso has been driving this season. If they designated a #1 on that team and pushed with that strategy, Alonso would not be 2nd. So there are other coincidental reasons why he is really 2nd – it could be said.

  21. Dutch Johnny says:

    As usual comments that make him look like some sort of god. Do people never get tired of his comments? If i where an employee of Ferrari i wouldn’t like those comments either. Its like your boss saying that he’s happy his sales are better then his rivals although his empoyee aren’t of the same skill as the competition. Great motivater that alonso guy…

    1. Jodum5 says:

      He does have a point. He’s 2nd in the WDC but hasn’t been on the podium in six races. Of course others are taking points off each other and probably only Grosjean has performed better but it’s telling.

      1. Dutch Johnny says:

        Ofcourse alonso has a point but always the same comments from him annoys me.

      2. Dan says:

        maybe because he’s always out performing his rubbish ferrari’s, and is always telling the truth? I know the truth hurts sometimes, but he’s been out performing his red mules for 4 years now. You may be sick of him saying it but i bet he’s even more sick.

      3. Dutch Johnny says:

        Are you alonso in disguise?

  22. Sebee says:

    …and Alonso, there was a time you were winning. So for a period of time, you actually did have the fastest car, and easily second fastest.

    Let’s not overlook that. I’m sure those wins are a big reason why you’re claiming full credit for second win WDC while fully blaming Ferrari for not giving you the tools. I tend to disagree with your black and white assessment. There is plenty of gray around here.

  23. H.Guderian says:

    I’m assuming VET helped his team mate very well, right???

    Pffff…..

  24. kent says:

    look- Fernando weems to have made those comments only in response to his boss disparaging him. he has outdriven the car not just this year but ever since he’s been at Ferrari- and the team and LdM haven’t given him a car capable of winning. no wonder he’s frustrated. do you not think he wouldn’t have a couple more WC if he had a car as fast as the Red Bulls?

  25. Richard says:

    Bud, its 2013, reliability only hits Mark Webber. Happy to see that we’ll have new engines next year when reliability will be a problem for everyone again.

    1. Ricardo says:

      I would say in Malaysia he had probably the fastest car, Massa towards the end, when out of traffic was the fastest guy in the track while in Bahrein first or second but too close to call. On the other hand in Silverstone he had the fourth fastest behind the Force India (but not Lotus). But was lucky with the strategy, mechanical and tyre failures from people in front and even Di Resta serving a penalty on the grid.

    2. Ricardo says:

      You obviously didn’t see the race at Silverstone

      1. justafan says:

        Maybe Richard has just got a short memory.

  26. Rob Newman says:

    Proud to be second! Bwwahaahaaahaaa ..!!!!!

    1. C Lin says:

      Even if he is third or fourth or fifth…he would still say he is proud blah blah blah.

      He is a great driver but definitely not Personality of the Year ha!

    2. W Johnson says:

      The racing politics of a Loser!

    3. A.N. Other says:

      “Proud to be second! Bwwahaahaaahaaa ..!!!!!”

      I am going to assume a lack of maturity due to a lack of age is a major factor in the nature of your comments, Newman.

      Alonso has done an amazing job this year, and no one who has much experience with F1 will disagree. Alonso has placed his car well above where most other drivers on the grid could have finished with the same car, and there are few if any higher achievements for a driver than this. Senna was one of the few who had similar capabilities, and Alonso remains at the very top of the drivers in F1. I long for the days of the IROC or the BMW Procar series. If such a series were to return we would see dramatically fewer Vettel wins. Most people who are not engineers cannot grasp the advantage that the Newey car gives Vettel. This is funny because Vettel himself
      bowed before his own car recently, so Vettel does know.

      Regarding the motive behind Alonso’s comments, perhaps Alonso is attempting to manipulate Ferrari into releasing him without exacting a financial penalty from Alonso. If I were Alonso I’d want to get away from Ferrari, who clearly have failure deeply embedded in the culture of the company at this time.

      1. “…Most people who are not engineers cannot grasp the advantage that the Newey car gives Vettel…”

        As it happens the RB9 is so cleverly engineered that it gives that enormous advantage to Vettel and Vettel only, as Mark Webber has failed to win any race this year. How extraordinary!

        “…Alonso has done an amazing job this year, and no one who has much experience with F1 will disagree…”

        I was rather unimpressed by his being overtaken twice at Loews, or his lack of qualifying performance. I do follow F1 since the late seventies and I cannot see any similarity between him and Senna. The Brazilian always managed to qualify extremely well, even with the McLaren from 93.
        Alonso has turned into a poor qualifier (he was extremely good at his beginnings) and a great racer. He is a very, very good driver. His great problem is that he isn’t as good as he thinks.

      2. Hansb says:

        So you happen to know Alonso is a bad qualifier.
        Do you know all the facts for that or are you just talking after some anti FA fans here ?
        There are enough variables why single lap performance can be compromised.
        If Vettel makes a little mistake (like he did) he still ends 2nd because his car is half a second faster or more. If FA or KR make the same mistake they end up 8 or something.

      3. Yago says:

        Amazing how a driver can become a “poor qualifier” after being “extremely good at his beginnings”. I wonder if it is the driver or the eye whatching who has changed?

        You mentioned before you are a Kimi fan. And you said you are waiting whole-heartedly for next year to see how Kimi beats Fernando. Well, one thing is for sure. You probably are going to suffer, while I am going to enjoy it, because contrarily to you whichever comes out on top is not a problem for me, as far as they are able to compete on an equal footing, which they will.

      4. There is nothing amazing, it is rather frequent. Look at the career of Niki Lauda for instance. He did not achieve a single pole position in 1984 when he snatched his third World Championship.
        Drivers change with age, there are exceptions, (Shu’s pole in Monaco last year, even though he had to yield a few places due to a penalty).

        You think I am going to suffer? I would think again Yago. How could it be that Ferrari has hired James Allison and Dirk De Beer to draw a car that will suit Alonso?
        I would put my money on that it will be ideal for Kimi.
        Time will tell.

      5. puffing says:

        +1. I endorse your commentary, from A to Z.

      6. Dutch Johnny says:

        I could list Schumachers ’96,’97,98′ aswell with putting cars way ahead then where he should have finisht. And senna and alonso in one sentence? not a chance. I agree with jody schecters comments about alonso: a consistent performer…

      7. W Johnson says:

        Alonso’s best skill his self promotion…..to under rate the performance of his car to promote his own abilities. So tedious!

  27. Tom Haythornthwaite says:

    Is the Ferrari wind tunnel *still* not working? It’s been a couple of years already, hasn’t it?

  28. Mikeboy0001 says:

    I dislike Alonso as a person, but hugely respect him as a driver
    And he’s right, overall in the season, Ferrari has been 4th fastest car, behind RB, Mercedes and Lotus, so getting 2nd place is an achievement
    Montezemolo is crazy for bashing a driver that has give far more to Ferrari, than Ferrari gave to him.
    That wind tunnel going on year after year, it’s for a Marussia with pennies, not a Ferrari with millions

    1. SteveS says:

      “Ferrari has been 4th fastest car”

      Based on what? Alonso’s endlessly poor performances on Saturdays? It’s been the second fastest car on Sundays. In fact it’s been faster than Webber’s RB9.

      1. Hansb says:

        Are you saying Vettel and Webber drive different machinery ? Just curious.

      2. j says:

        Steve is still convinced that the RBR isn’t the fastest car… high comedy.

      3. justafan says:

        You mean Webber’s RB9 is different to Vettel’s?

    2. clyde says:

      Heh Heh well said !

  29. zombie says:

    Had it not been for Schumacher, Mika Hakkinen would have had atleast 4 to 5 titles, and Damon Hill atleast 2. It must have taken a monumental effort in the 90s and early 2000s to keep Newey in check.

    I feel for Alonso. He may have a motormouth, and he is no “team player” who’ll fight to win the undying loyalty of his comrades, but he is an exceptional talent. Arguably the most complete driver of his generation.

    Domenicalli probably has the same magic wand that Massa does. Nothing else explains how those two have managed to keep their jobs despite such lacklustre performances.

    I have a gut feeling that Kimi wont be able to do any miracles and will most likely quitely retire after 2015 or 2016. Ferrari finds itself in the all too familiar situation of the 80s and early 90s. They need someone like Jean Todt again who can put the team back together brick by brick.And a ruthless driver who’ll give no quarter and ask for none. I think what they are looking for are Brawn,Vettel and Newey .

    1. German Samurai says:

      Are you really “complete” when you nearly get matched in qualifying by Massa, and find yourself in races fighting for position against Hulkenberg in the underfunded Sauber with its customer Ferrari engine??

      Ferrari is hardly where they were in the 80′s and 90′s. If Alonso managed to get the maximum from the car like Vettel has then Ferrari would have committed resources to the remainder of 2013 like Red Bull did.

      And for all the talk of Brawn, he’s failed at Mercedes and only ever helped create the best car on the grid in 2001-02, 2004 and 2009 ( which was more to do with their very liberal interpretation of the rules more than anything).

      People underestimate the difference having the best driver in your car makes.

    2. Sanky says:

      How can Alonso be a complete driver if he cant even qualify well …even though most ppl think that race is where it counts, qualifying can definitely have a lot of impact on your progress and strategy in races ..problem with Alonso is that he is slower on single lap pace than Vettel, Hamilton, Rosberg and Grosjean and ends up most of the time qualifying 5th or 6th …if he could have qualified say 2nd or 3rd , he would have had good chances to challenge Vettel last year and also this year till the Singapore updates came on Red Bull

      1. Odjebi says:

        Is there such a thing as setting a car up for a race and sacrifice a bit of performance for qualifying?

    3. justafan says:

      I wonder why they didn’t sign Vettel already instead of Alonso. Or to partner him. This is a big mistake by Ferrari.

      1. Rockie says:

        Vettel wont go to Ferrari that’s the problem or you really think Ferrari don’t want Vettel in the car?
        Its only on Forums people under estimate Vettel every team wants a driver like Vettel driving their car!

  30. f1_fan says:

    oh man… you media people are dead set on always showing Alonso in bad light against ferrari aren’t you ? where did he say he’d do his talking on the track, how come its not quoted, does it mean he never said that, its just your “assumption” or conclusion from his statements right ?

    1. f1_fan says:

      also only other site reporting the news auto motor and sports, says , i mean the translation says, he said ” Ask Engineers” not “Ask Domenicali”

    2. puffing says:

      Agreed. Nothing I have read from Alonso’s mouth lately has conveyed me the feeling that conveys the piece of article of above, except the heading. The rest are assumptions. Yet, the pot is stirred, the story on the chasing. Too bad for this site, I must say.

  31. Paul D says:

    James – do you think these type of comments could potentially build to a Prost 1991 type exit?

    He’s not quite called the car a truck yet but…

  32. JB says:

    In terms of this year driver’s performance, I would easily rank Vettel as the best despite he is in the fastest car.
    He made little (or no) mistakes and he made all the moves when needed. Save tires when needed, overtakes when needed, and he is even able to produce the fastest laps without KERS.

    Kimi Raikkonen is a very close second. He has been immaculate and punching out performance well above the capabilities of the Lotus. Saving tires, patience and making clear cut moves.
    Undoubtedly, his commitment moved to Ferrari after getting contract from them. So I bet Ferrari pulled some strings which is easy to do when Lotus decided not to pay him.

    In third, I rank Hulkenburg. He has been outstanding since the driver market opened up. I hope he will get a good drive next year. F1 should have him on a good team. Come on Bernie! do your magic and give the fans a treat… LOL

    Finally, Alonso in forth place. I know he ranks second in WDC but he never had a slow car like the way he described. He has been fast on race trim. Just slow on quali. This explains his amazing overtakings.
    I guess he ran out of steam from the 2012 campaign where he narrowly lost out to Vettel. This year’s Alonso is a lot less motivated. I feel that he sees history repeating where he hasn’t got ‘the fastest’ car and so even if he try super-hard to catch Vettel, he will end up like 2012. So why bother?

    1. AlexD says:

      Please do not compare Vettel to the rest. I hope you understand that you can control things a bit better when you know that you have a significant buffer over the rest of the field when it comes to the car. Only when you are crossing the limit, you make mistakes. So Vettel did not really have to.

      He is very good, but he would not do the same in a 2nd or 3rd fastest car…when he is not leading from start to finish. What kind of mistakes are you expecting a driver to make? You just drive your own races and control the tyres…that’s it.

      1. JB says:

        I see your point.
        So you reckon that since you start from the front. You get to control the race pace and thus use up the tires in the most ideal manner. But how did he end up there and not Webber (who has the same car)?

        The trick is to be on pole during Quali. In other words, the Fridays and Saturdays preparations are more important than the race itself.
        AND, Vettel has mastered that part of the weekend as well as the race. Vettel won’t be so fast if he did not prepare for it.

        He made every effort to do his best throughout the weekend. The tremendous amount of preparations makes his teammate appear unluckier than him. But hard-work is what ‘builds his luck’, so to speak.

        Remember, he is still a young boy. This is why I ranked him at the top.

      2. AlexD says:

        You wanna hear that Vettel is better than Webber? Sure he is. I am saying that he is not better than Alonso.

      3. JB says:

        If I’m looking at just 2013. I would say Vettel is better compared to the deflated Alonso.

        If I’m looking at 2012. I would say, Alonso was much better than Vettel. Especially the first half of the season.

        It is a big assumption to think that ‘A’ is always better than ‘B’. So with that in mind, I genuinely feel that Alonso hasn’t been at his best this year. So Alonso could be a better driver again (a comeback) next year.

      4. Rockie says:

        How was Alonso better than Vettel in 2012?
        A lot of people forget as good as Alonso was Vettel lost the WDC lead when he retired at Valencia, that’s where he had a 32 pt swing against him.
        When it mattered the most Alonso was being out-qualified by Massa and being given positions in the race which Vettel didn’t have!

      5. Mikeboy0001 says:

        That’s so not true
        You say he has a buffer, and say he doesn’t cross the limit, so how does he get that buffer? That’s a big countersense
        I guess he must have traction control or turbo?
        And the guy in front is always the one with the most pressure, no just in F1, but in any other sport
        Want to know why? Because he’s the one who’s got a whole lot more to lose. This is why some people get to the top and stay there, where others have a small glimpse and fall behind
        By the way, Vettel won his first GP in a Toro Rosso, when tyres weren’t a factor, like for instance, on the first half of the 2012 season, where multiple drivers won races
        Toro Rosso is not a front running team, is it?
        To close my case, rewatch Brazil 2012, last race of the season, where he was fighting for the World Championship
        He was dead last after lap 1, with a damaged car in rain conditions. Is this enough pressure for you?
        He carved through the field, and ended up 6th, securing the title, where had he been lower than 7th, it would have gone to Alonso (either of them deserved it)
        Alonso is a tremendous driver, as is Hamilton, a very fast one, but at the moment, Vettel step up another gear
        He has the speed of Hamilton on Saturday’s, and even more consistency than Alonso on Sunday’s

      6. JB says:

        I am glad you have spoken these without restraint. Bravo! I agree with you totally.

        It is with great respect for both Alonso and his fans that I decided not to put him at the next level compared to Alonso.

        Honestly, even the last race in 2010. The incredible confidence in 2008 Monza. And of course who can forget the comeback race in 2012 in Abu Dhabi and Interlagos. Those races show that he is way above all other current champions.
        You can tell when other drivers find excuses like Vettel is the luckiest driver, he has the best car always, and accusations of illegal car design and so on. All these words pop out because of jealousy and inability to accept defeat.

  33. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

    Yet another good season from Alonso, I’d give him a 9 out of 10, one down from the 10 out of 10 and best ever season by any driver ever in 2012.

    For Luca di Monty, a disappointing 3 out of 10, again.

  34. AlexD says:

    One thing I really regret – people who asked Luca about Alonso and his performance, why did they not ask about the car and how he rates the car? I would give Ferrari 5/10.

    Nobody is forever motivated when other elements are not in order and are not helping to win

    1. JB says:

      It will be a hard question to answer without offending the whole Ferrari team (with hundreds of employees involved).

      Over recent years, I find Ferrari almost always have the fastest car at the start of the year. but their development pace is weaker than RedBull and Mclarens. By the end of the year, they are just far behind.

      Red Bull tends to be faster after the summer break so they just have be under damage control for the first half of the year.

      Mclaren used to be very good with turning their car around to have pace but this year that did not happen. Probably because they wrote it off at the start of the year and put resources to 2014.

      Lotus has been in an almost there position for a number of years now. They’ve got good people but one driver has let them down many times (I’m talking about Grosjean). They should create a better deal to attract good drivers. Kimi was a great gift for Lotus but still Lotus screw up.

      1. Yago says:

        Ferrari the fastest car at the start of the year in recent years? Don’t make me laugh.
        2009 No
        2010 No
        2011 No
        2012 No!!!!
        2013 No

      2. JB says:

        2009 no.
        2010 They won the first race and Alonso was ahead most of the season until the last race. So yes. They are up there.

        2011. That was a write off. So no.

        2012. Alonso lead the way first half of the season. If that is not to do with a fast car, then we can’t continue this discussion. And please, look at results instead of listening to Alonso’s propaganda. So Yes.

        2013. He had won few races in the first half of the season. He will always say the car is too slow but the results speaks otherwise. So Yes.

        So again, Ferrari is fast enough at the start to win races but they just can’t keep up with the development pace of other teams. So another glum faced Alonso.. LOL

        OK OK. I meant a fast enough car to win. Not outright fastest… My bad. Of course, RedBull is only fastest second half of the season. So they too don’t have fastest car all year round.

      3. KRB says:

        2013 one could argue, at least equal best. There’s a reason why Stella radioed “we are there” after the race in Melbourne. Things looked good at the start this year for Ferrari, better than any season since 2008.

      4. Brad says:

        Apparently they employed Alonso as team leader and to help/guide them with the development of the car, something tells me he fails horribly in that regard, it could be the failure over the last 4 years to move forward, not just from the team. Instead, we now have Vettel who works hard getting the car to be to his liking (with his feedback etc) and is totally at one with his car…

      5. KRB says:

        2010 they also started with a 1-2 (yes, b/c of Vettel’s spark plug problem, but still), but they qualified 2-3 at that first race, had 3 podiums in the first two races (plus a fourth), and a Ferrari driver led after the first three rounds of the championship. So while they lost their way for a bit a little after that, before coming back strong at the end, they did start out with a front-running car.

      6. Odjebi says:

        @KRB…….hahaha yeah sure they were second best at the start of 2012!
        I forget are u a McLaren fan of Lewis fan? Either way, bashing alonso might just be your only happy moment of 2013

      7. Yago says:

        If you mean a competitive car, then yes, 2010 and 2013 they had a front runner during the first races. But you said fastest, and there is a big difference. For example, this year Ferrari and Lotus could compete with Red Bull during the first few races, but that was due to something going really wrong with Red Bull and the tyres. Ferrari and Lotus were near a second off the ultimate Red Bull pace in qualifying. This is why it is very different saying the fastest or a competitive car.

        One last thing. If you are dicussing with people with a fair amount of F1 knowledge, and say that the 2012 Ferrari was a front runner during the first few races, they are not going to take you seriously from there on. So try to rewatch those races to get a proper view on relative competitiveness of the cars…

      8. JB says:

        I am not trying to win any trophy here. Because there is no trophy to win in this discussion.

        I have made my point that Ferrari is up there being competitive. The only mistake which you rightly pointed out is the word fastest. Which i corrected on the following reply.

        I am simply describing how each top team has been like through a season. Somehow that went side ways and got into a debate of the word fastest.

        It would be better if we discuss about the key factors that made red bull’s success consistently. And how are the teams can find a way to defeat Red Bull.

  35. Sarvar says:

    ALO lost 2 titles due to his selfishness and ignoring laws of nature.
    In Hockenheim 10 he wanted the win much more than his team mate who was recovering from physical & psychological injury.
    In Austin 12 he again chose this strategy to reach the goal by compromising team mate’s result.

    How VET’s car survived on first lap crash in Brazil 12 is an obvious example that some outcomes are beyond our power.

    1. Basil says:

      Good observation!

    2. JB says:

      I usually don’t like to talk about it in such mysterious manner. But I have to agree that some part of me felt Vettel deserved it more, especially in 2012.

      1. Yago says:

        Okay, now I understand most of your comments…

    3. Brad says:

      +1 Sarvar

  36. quattro says:

    Not sure what the point with this “story” is…proving that intelligence is not the strongest side of Montezemolo? Is that new stuff?

    “According to a Spanish press agency, he is reported to have said similar things to the Spanish, adding that he had the “seventh or eighth fastest car” this year, but this site has not been able to verify those quotes yet.”

    So, what has “this site” concluded the order of the Ferrari (with which ALO indeed has scored a strong 2nd in the driver’s) speed-wise, has been overall during 2013? 1st, maybe? 2nd? 3rd? 4th?

    What a none-story.

  37. NickH says:

    How many times does he have to tell us how good he is and how bad his car is.. No other driver does this

    1. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

      Hamilton did it today, Rosberg on top driving well in the wet and Hamilton says his Merc is bad in the wet, says it is the worst car in his career so far in the wet, says he usually makes the difference and beats people in the wet…

      How many times does the team boss have to deny the car and its development is the problem hiding this behind snippy comments about his top driver who is trying to push on the team. No other team boss does this.

      1. NickH says:

        Yeah he was basically saying he is nowhere in terms of the setup in the wet in his Merc car. He also went in to say Nico was doing a better job in these conditions and that the car is obviously capable of doing more in wet conditions. You missed that bit off.

  38. Dante says:

    God forbid, LdM would ever admit that the problems were/are in Maranello. He’s a company man, after all, and prefers to say that a driver is 8 out of 10, and is thereby the problem. Disgraceful.

    1. Tony says:

      8 out of 10 wouldn’t imply the drive is the problem. It’s a bloody good score I would’ve thought.

      1. KRB says:

        Totally! Can’t say he’s done as well this year compared to last year.

    2. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

      LdM would do well to zip it and concentrate on fixing his engineering issues.

      Ferrari should go and get Brawn back to organise these engineers, to let Allison focus on the downforce like Newey does. If Allison could do half the job of Newey, which is probably still a big ask, then Ferrari would improve. Brawn would also sort out their terrible strategies such as missing undercuts. LdM should stay right out of it never mentioning Alonso or Kimi to the press next year till the season is over so everything is focused on the racing and not the distraction politics.

      Horner could probably bait LdM again, probably on Alonso’s loyalty, LdM who won’t be able to help himself wades in, captured hook, line and sinker.

  39. puffing says:

    Austin, 2013. On the Ferraris’ radio:
    “Felipe, Fernando does not break at all on turn 4.”

    1. puffing says:

      This commentary of above has fallen here out of context.
      It was meant as a ironic reply to other commentary (of Joel) that said that “May be Alonso should do more to help his team mate (may be share some of his setups).”
      I do not why, my commentary was first published as a reply to that of Joel, now it stands alone.

  40. Paddock F1 says:

    I am a big fan of Alonso, although I do think he maths need revising like the comment of driving 120% made at certain points of last season. If the constructors championship standings are anything to go by then it would have to be the 3rd fastest car – Brazil results providing. Apologies for being pedantic, I am a qualified accountant afterall.

  41. Fan says:

    Luca, is correct – albeit a bit generous in his rating of ALO. ALO has had a solidly average season – On a scale of 1-10 I’d actually put him at a 6 or 7. As others pointed out Ferrari was very strong to start the season, but did not capitalize. There were driver errors by ALO in Malaysia and Bahrain. In Monaco it was as if he was just going through the motions and was passed on track by several cars. He chewed up his prime tires in Germany only getting them to last as long as other getting their options to last. He has been missing in action on Saturday for a long time now. Massa, who doesn’t make anyone’s list as a strong qualifier has beaten him several times this season. This sets up a difficult Sunday for him. There are other examples. This list goes on and on. Luca is right to call it out.
    This will end in tears. ALO will not be at Ferrari in 2015. I’m surprised it took so long for him to wear out his welcome. He has trashed Ferrari for several years now – even in years where he has come within a hair of winning the championship. It’s always about how he doesn’t have the best car and that it’s only through his effort that Ferrari has a chance of winning titles. There was a line that was crossed. What that was we may never know, but there is no turning back now.

  42. Marcelo Leal says:

    Not the second best car?? Alonso, what is the second best car? Lotus? Maybe…
    But is a close battle between Lotus and Ferrari.
    Alonso, you have problems with a flying lap, but you had the second or third best car of the season, period. That’s why Kimi and you were fighting for the second place, and now RG is having good results too.
    Mercedes? They have two of the fastest man on the grid for a flying lap, and a quick car (not even close to be the second “best”). But a really bad car all year regarding tyre degradation. If they have sorted out that problem, so is, they would have the second best car or even the best at the beginning of the season.

  43. Rodolfo says:

    Great News for Vettel. Once again Alonso put 100% of the blame on the car which means that Alonso is perfect which in turn means he is not looking to learn or improve his own craft. That’s not how future champions deal with defeat. Alonso will forever remain only a double world champion which is a shame because he had talent – but he got lazy and won’t learn anymore .

    1. justafan says:

      I think the biggest difference between Schumacher and Alonso is, apart from 5 titles, 59 wins and 46 poles, that Schumacher never spoke out against his team.

      James, why is Alonso always complaining about his car, this is not exactly the right way to motivate the people that work really hard for him?

  44. F1 Bobby says:

    He’s 10/10 this year, not sure what more the team could ask of him. Ferrari on the other hand, 6/10?

    1. Hansb says:

      No to me not 10/10 because there were a few little mistakes or unlucky moments.
      Fighting with inferior machinery for most of the season though makes it very hard to be faultless so 9/10 would be it for me.

    2. justafan says:

      Surely Luca would know better than You? Certainly he has more insider information, don’t You think?

  45. SteveS says:

    If there is one aspect of being an F1 driver which Alonso is unmatched in, it’s self-promotion.

    1. justafan says:

      Interesting.He somehow reminds me of Ayrton Senna in that regard. I never remember Lauda, Prost, Hakkinen or Vettel self promoting themselves in such a way.

      PS: Webber also seems to be doing a lot of self promotion, and to a lesser degree Hamilton as well, but apart from those guys the rest of the field appears rather humble in regards of self promotion.

  46. Denny says:

    Alonso is the most complete driver in F1 today, in my opinion. Uncompetitive car, runner up!

    Luca, well, low opinion. Would be better to keep his opinions to himself, but . . . we know where he comes from . . . himself.

    All F1 drivers have egos so large it’s amazing they get their heads through a door. But what can I say, I love the sport and everything that goes with it.

    Hope 2014 creates a more competitive season, 2013 was boring, boring, boring. USA’s Indy Car Season was much more exciting racing.

    F1 will always be the pentacle of motor racing, but the show needs sprucing up. Would love to see it a real Driver’s Championship, and not so much a Constructor’s Championship.

  47. panagiotis says:

    the man is crying the obvious for 4 months… and very loud too. give me a reason other than provoking contract breaching clauses. this story goes beyond egos. Gi it is getting really annoying. if he continuous like this and Kimi rocks, I foresee Alonso next year, or the year after next @whatever team; around Monza to be the recipient of booing… for real!

  48. Peter says:

    Alonso is a wonderful driver but this year has shown that he doesn’t have the temperament or the ultimate speed to be regarded in the same light as Michael Schumacher or Sebastian Vettel.

  49. NC says:

    Don’t really blame him for his comments. Think about it from his perspective.

    You’re at the top of your game, thrash your team mate, and despite your team having the best budget, have to watch some young upstart in a clearly superior car, come and take the top prize every year.

    That would have to frustrate you and it’s been coming out this year.

  50. Aadil says:

    Do Ferrari even have a right 2 be critical of Alonso!!

    They claim that they want to beat Red Bull next year but they struggling to even beat a Sauber currently!

    They need to face the facts that they currently have a slower car then a half bankrupt team “Sauber” that couldnt manage to pay their electricity bill last month!

    They pathetic!

    I find it hard to believe the wind tunnels to blame for everything!

    They cant develope the car because ppl their dont know what the hell they doing there!!

    Alonso has every right too complain!

  51. Elie says:

    My take on Fernando Alonso:-

    #Very good determined consistent fast driver one of the best but def not a great- Abu Dhabi 2010, Monaco 2013 proved that.
    - biggest show boater in F1 history.
    - biggest mouth in F1 history
    - worst attitude of any driver in F1.
    - like Hamilton is too emotional under pressure.

    Cant stand the guy even if hes driving well- he’s the biggest wanker on the grid.

  52. Rohind says:

    Alonso is at his self-promotion as usual…Ferrari had a good car for larger part of the first half of the season…Even now Ferrari’s race pace isnt that bad…U can’t just put down a car because it lacks qualifying pace ( or maybe Fernando is too slow for that matter having been out qualified by Massa )..can’t believe anyone will support this guy after his tantrums in McLaren,Crashgate row and Germany 2010…His PR is doing one hell of a job, I must say

  53. Rohind says:

    Ferrari’s policy of favouring #1 driver is compromising the result of the 2nd driver and robbing them of strong points finish…It was evident from Abudhabi where Massa shud have finished higher, but team instead chose to fit medium tyres instead of softs for the final stint so that Alonso could finish higher…I don’t understand why Ferrari has to do that when Alonso is no longer contending for the championship…Alonso may be a talented driver..but he’s too political that he could demoralize and destroy the team…LUCA, PLEASE FIRE HIM AND BRING IN HULKENBERG…Strong result guaranteed at much cheaper prices

  54. Gary says:

    F.A. may not have the fastest car, but he certainly has amongst the prettiest of girlfriends.

  55. German Samurai says:

    I was wondering when Roflonso would come out with a self-congratulatory, self-aggrandising statement.

    Fact is that up until Spa, Vettel only had the best car in two races — Bahrain and Montreal. Some say Sepang, but Massa was only 15 seconds off the lead in that race. RB and Mercedes had to nurse their tyres to the finish. Alonso would have won if he didn’t make two mistakes in that race. Even in Bahrain and Montreal it would have been close if Alonso didn’t have the DRS problem (that he exacerbated by using DRS a second time) and didn’t butcher his Montreal qualifying.

    From the summer break on the RB has been in a class of its own, but up until that point it had no such edge. I remember after Hamilton winning in Hungary many experts were predicting Hamilton to make a charge and win the title!

    On balance, Alonso had the best car up until Spa. He could have had four wins in the first five races if he managed to extract the maximum from the car. Instead, Vettel pulled away in the championship despite Roflonso having the best equipment.

    Alonso has had a bad year. Massa has no business in an F1 car yet has nearly matched Alonso in qualifying, Alonso has made many mistakes at the death in qualifying, mistakes in races, has found himself in duels with Hulkenberg despite Hulkenberg having a customer Ferrari engine and far inferior chassis.

    Monaco was probably his worst race of the year and it came at such a bad time right after dominating in Spain. Got muscled out of the way by a Force India, by a McLaren.

  56. themarvz says:

    Once 2014 kicks in:

    1) If Vettel wins his 5th championship (though I doubt it), we will all say it’s all about the car and feel irritated about it.

    2) If Alonso wins next year, we will (and Alonso) will say how he deserved to win it for outdriving his 3rd/4th best car (regardless if it’s true) and feel glad about it

    Personally I prefer Vettel if this is the case.. at least he admits his car is good. I don’t think ALO will even admit his car is the best if he wins just to get the Senna mystique.

    1. Odjebi says:

      You obviously didn’t watch f1 in 2005 and 2006. Where the man from Oviedo repeatedly praised the race winning Renault. Heres what he said after a race win… “perfect….the car was perfect…perfect weekend, qualifying and race…pit stops. Big thank you to the team, here and back at the factory. I’m very happy. Good result for both championships, obviously with Michael finishing out of the points. We will continue to do the maximum and hopefully the results continue”.

      1. James Allen says:

        We don’t like the tone or language of most of your posts. Please observe the rules or all posts will be deleted – Mod

      2. themarvz says:

        My bad James, sorry. Didnt know was breaking any rules! Real sorry.

  57. Steve160k says:

    After following F1 for 20 + years, actually watching the top drivers at the real drivers circuits (Spa, Silverstone, Monza, Monaco etc) in action, it is clear that Alonso is up with the best, of any era. We had a conversation with the Renault race crew at Monaco 2008, the year Kovalinen took number one status, and they stated they had lost three tenths of a second per lap, and without Alonso wringing 100% out of the car, lost direction with development. In the paddock, he is consistently acknowledged as the best complete driver. Take note of Martin Whitmarsh’ comment, and targeting him for 2015. With a front running competitve car he would be chasing Schumacher’s seven titles. In a nut shell what Alonso stated is the Ferrari overall was the 4th fastest car this year. Analyse the whole year and that is correct.

    1. German Samurai says:

      “After following F1 for 20 + years, actually watching the top drivers at the real drivers circuits (Spa, Silverstone, Monza, Monaco etc) in action, it is clear that Alonso is up with the best, of any era. We had a conversation with the Renault race crew at Monaco 2008, the year Kovalinen took number one status, and they stated they had lost three tenths of a second per lap, and without Alonso wringing 100% out of the car, lost direction with development.”

      What? Kovalainen was at McLaren.

      I think we all know Kovalainen isn’t on the level of the top drivers. His record at McLaren was terrible.

      Alonso is not in the class of Vettel or Hamilton, with Vettel being on an even higher level to Hamilton. He had the best car at the start of the year and did nothing with the advantage.

      1. justafan says:

        I agree. Basically Alonso ruined his season with his shunt in Malaysia.

      2. James Allen says:

        That didn’t help, but the lack of development is what really did him in and then the change of tyre specs after Silverstone

      3. Steve160k says:

        Okay – my mistake, Kovalainen was lead driver at Mclaren 2007, not 2008.

        Fact – the Red Bull is dominant this season, and has been the last three seasons also. Yes, Vettel is a great driver, but flattered by a dominant car.

        If you talk to the people that know – Hamilton, Webber, Massa (read their comments)you get a clear picture of who they acknowledge as the strongest competitor – Alonso.

        Most of the team principles up and down the pit lane would take Alonso in a heartbeat. There is a reason for that.

        No, i am not Spanish, but i recognize stand out talent.

        The mark of an elite driver is what they do with machinery that is not the class of the field.

        Alonso – second in the drivers championship this year. He consistently wrings the absolute maximum from the Ferrari that only a couple of current drivers are able to do.

        Remember who also was a match for Schumacher in 2005/06. Suzuka – 130R. Remember ?.

        Next year will be interesting. If the top teams are reasonably close on pace, then we will see the cream rising to the top

  58. Olivier says:

    You need a vision first before you work like crazy. We have an expression for that in Belgium: Head in the air, feet on the ground.

    This is why Red Bull and Vettel are so good. Vettel and the crew are doing the legwork, while Newey is keeping the overview.

    This is what is going wrong at Ferrari. They have the best driver in his prime at their disposal and they are undoubtedly working like crazy. Yet they have to contend themselves with being the follower. It is a great recipe for always being second best. What they need is a visionary. They have one now. Let’s hope James Allison gets his way of doing things.

    The problem is how long it will take to turn Ferrari into a Championship winning force again. They will probably be ready when Vettel hits his prime in a few years time. But what about Alonso?

  59. JohnBt says:

    Two words for Alonso ‘VERY FRUSTRATED’.

  60. James M says:

    Unfortunately these comments show that he doesn’t understand that you win as a team and lose as a team. A better and more Schumacher-esque attitude would serve him well, especially given the similarities between their careers.

  61. Dave Aston says:

    Man, this gets more boring every year. Maybe he’s just not that great at setting a car up. Since he’s been there, they’ve slowly slipped down the order. Add Vettel at Red Bull, or Hamilton at Mercedes, and their results started improving. Even at their low points, Schumacher at Ferrari never really bitched about the team. Alonso never stops. He’s great, but more trouble than he’s worth.

  62. Blazz says:

    The only thing I can say to this is qualy pace and race pace are two totally different things. In race trim I would say the Ferrari was second to Red Bull on average, with Lotus just behind and then the Mercs.

  63. Rishi says:

    I think it is too unfair to say Alonso is too egoistic or that Massa has to let him through too many times.
    Recall interlagos 2012,half the grid dare not contest Vettel, like the 2 torro rossos,schumi,webber even lotus….kimi almost killed his tyres rather than touch vettel…In those cicumstances the least you can have as the main competitor is compliance from ur team mate….and the poor bloke gets crucified in endless comment sections and media…Also it is quite evident that Massa is not as good at conserving tyres because of his attacking style,nobody factors in that his pit strategies have a lot more to do with is own tyre hungry driving style..

    James, now that the season is over, can you please touch on the subject of ‘drs only in the zone’ rule hurting Ferrari a bit in qualifying, as they depend mostly on their top speed than corner one….I am surprised no expert has dwelled into it more.Not saying that is the only reason but certainly must have taken a couple tenths off the pace or even more on high speed circuits…Wud be very interesting to read your opinion…

    Thanks for you awesome articles, love ‘em.

  64. Roger says:

    I think it’s a no brainer that VET, ALO and HAM are the top 3 drivers in F1 at this time. RAI is great but had a very good car, especially this year (arguably 2nd best). Although he did good, I think VET and ALO would have done better in the same car. I’d say HAM also but he slipped this year making too many mistakes and under achieved by his own admission.

    It will be interesting at Ferrari next year. The only way ALO can quiet the naysayers is take RAI to beat him soundly which I think will happen.

    All this stuff about him complaining too much etc. means nothing in my opinion. HAM was very critical while at McLaren and as competitive as VET is who is to say he wouldn’t be also, especially after winning numerous WDCs as ALO did?

    Anyone who thinks ALO didn’t get the absolute most out of the Ferrari in the last 4 years tells me they don’t like him. I think his antics at McLaren leaves many followers bitter.

  65. Pruthvik says:

    I think Alonso just gave his everything in 2012 and yet had to fill his’ stomach with a second place …just three points short off vettel which i think would have not happened if the ferraris would have had made a car which would have been par with the red bull and the mclaren …but still alonso won three races in the season just making sure that he is worth every penny that the italian manufracturers pay him…he is a man who can get the best out of any car and he is the man who deserved to be the youngest 3 time world champion

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