Fernando Alonso and Ferrari
McLaren
Fernando Alonso and Ferrari
Posted By:   |  02 Jul 2009   |  8:47 am GMT  |  87 comments

Here we go again; summer’s here, the temperatures are sky high, there’s a long three week gap between races and Max Mosley and FOTA have gone quiet.

If a vacuum is created something will come along to fill it and in this case it is the Spanish sports paper AS claiming that Ferrari is set to announce its deal with Fernando Alonso at the Italian Grand Prix in September.

According to AS, Monza is where important Ferrari announcements are made (true up to a point) and the traditional end of season Ferrari celebration has been booked in for November at the Valencia circuit (the permanent one, not the F1 street track) in order to celebrate the arrival of the Spanish driver many in the team feel they should have hired in 2006.

“We are not going to waste our time commenting on speculation. Everyone should remember that Massa and Raikkonen have contracts which include 2010,” team spokesman Luca Colajanni is quoted as saying to Gazzetta dello Sport.

I’ve posted on this before, if anyone wants to look back it was during Monaco weekend and just after Christmas last year. Alonso is a Ferrari driver, the deal is done and it is looking increasingly possible that he will drive in 2010 rather than 2011. Who knows whether they will announce it at Monza, but the story fills the news vacuum at the moment.

What I will say is that back in 1995 there were many rumours that Michael Schumacher was going to be announced as a Ferrari driver. The Ferrari press office issued a press release on 20th June which said,

“Ferrari would like to express, for the umpteenth time and with maximum clarity that all stories relating to negotiations with the driver Michael Schumacher are totally false.”

A few weeks later FIAT patriarch Gianni Agnelli announced the signing of Schumacher and new era began.

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1

Hi James,

Love your blog! How do you figure that Alonso may be driving at Ferrari next year? Both Kimi and Felipe have contracts. I would assume that if Alonso goes to Ferrari next year, then Kimi would have to be dropped as I can’t imagine Ferrari paying two mega salaries. Or perhaps they can?

But you know, Kimi gets a lot of slack and while I think that some of it is deserved, I don’t really think that Ferrari has produced a championship car. It is my opinion, that if they would have concentrated all their resources with one driver (a la schumacher), Kimi would have won the title last year if not come close to it. But they chose equal status and as a consequence developed a car that did not suit Kimi’s driving style. This year the car is crap, and therefore not much to do.
We should take note that both Alonso and Hamilton are also driving crap cars! My point here being that there just so much a driver can do; if the car is bad then the car is bad. Perhaps it’s the same with Kimi. But I guess he makes an easier target as he has that ” I don’t give a damn” attitude.

So, if you are correct and Alonso drives a Ferrari nextseason, who in your opinion should go? Massa or Raikkonen

2

Hmmm….

And here we are again….

Alonso getting on with a team mate on equal terms?… don’t see it myself….

So that means losing Felipe for sure…

And as for the Kimster…. there is one sure thing that Kimi doesn’t give a toss about, and that’s who his team mate is… although he’d never agree to be formally the number 2 driver….

I think Alonso and Kimi could live together (although I am not sure that Fernie would want that) but I am really not sure about Alonso and Massa….

As for the idea that Alonso and Vettel will end up in the same team…. dream on guys…. Alonso won’t get into a car anywhere near “young Seb”….

3

Ferrari is the only team on the grid that has built a consistently quick car that has challanged for the title. Apart from this season and 05 with stupid tyre rules.

Brawns car is one in a million, and he will never be able to replicate it. The facts are brawn was built with 5 windtunnels and had a 1 year head start on the competition.

Redbull, is quick, but not consistent.

4
Julian Smallwood

Three cars please

5

Well, if you followed F1 closely you would have known that in 2007 and 2008 Massa has made more overtaking moves than Raikkonen.

6

I think Kimi is bored, he knows he can’t win or come anywhere near the front, why should he bother trying when there is no hope!
It’s a trudge going round and round at the same speed same corner each time.

Conversely WRC offers possible near, or actual, death every few seconds, you don’t know the course, your navigator is shouting the next but one bend in your ear, you are in the air half the time and rarely have more than 60% traction. A totally different skill set which depends heavily upon your car control, concentration and luck in missing roadside hazards like milestones and trees. Its the sort of thing to get a Kimi excited. F1, in fact all circuit racing, obtains its speed by the drivers learning the circuit millimetre perfect. Highly skilful and far far more difficult than it looks but still repetitive a spectator sport for us fans; whereas to watch rallying, you need to trek for miles into the wilds and stand with one leg longer than the other in the rain or snow for hours to see cars in one small section. If its not raining the dust will make it impossible to see anything.

So how much do Ferrari still get from Marlborough? I thought it had been banned, but the red barcode is still very evident as a logo even if the wordmark is not shown. Also I noticed they are still in MotoGP.

Lets not make assumptions about a miraculous recovery next year by Ferrari, it took several years for them to recover last time; but Alonso is not Schumacher.

7

keep kimi raikkonen and let Massa to Mclaren. Kimi and Alonso would be one hell of a team, like Senna and Prost.

8
David Turnedge

Kimi is clearly not interested in F1… Massa seems much more committed to the team… Alonso and Massa would be a great driver team for 2010… Kimi and Alonso… another year of Kimi and Massa… I just can’t see it.

Alonso still has years left in his career and is one of the best drivers on the grid – let’s see him equal Prost and approach Shcumacher’s record of WCs…

9

Bad news for me. I’ve never liked Alonso and always been massively fond of Ferrari. If this deal happens from 2011 (or 2010) I will only be supporting one Ferrari car. Sad days 🙁

10

Yes – one of the worst kept secrets in F1: Alonso to Ferrari

Santander moving sponsorship to Ferrari next year only seeks to guarantee the move in 2010 (Spanish sponsorship – Spanish driver)

It is clear that it’s Kimi who will leave at the end of this season… lack of consistency and wayward commitment is now an issue when the scarlet cars are not performing (maybe it was more tolerable when the cars were leading the pack)

I agree with James that he will not race in F1 again and this will be his last season in the sport

The intersting situation though, will be Massa.

Will Massa really want to be in the same team as Alonso. He surely saw the effects of Lewis in 2007. Fernando likes sub standard no.2 drivers. I am not sure Massa is now in that category and if Massa is given a good car will beat Alonso some of the time – how frequently remain to be seen but that was the one of the causes of problems in 2007.

The other problem at McClaren in 2007 was that the team had a strong Lewis core. I would now argue Massa has achieved major follwoing and respect from the Ferrari garage also.

I cannot see Massa staying if Alonso joins – or if he does stay prepare for major fireworks next year to rival the McClaren year.

Ironic how Kimi is going to the WRC in Finland after Hungary. It was in Hungary where Lewis and Fernando kicked off – and doors were ripped off by Alonso in Ron’s office.

Wonder if any kick off reaction will happen this year…?

11

Massa in his best form can match Kimi in his worst form….Fernando and Kimi would be a dream for Ferrari, 2 years ago Luca had already expressed the fact that he wants to see them in one team. We will see. Kimi is bored of not being in the front and not winning…

12

Perhaps he is going to be the reserve driver for 2010 and sit it out on the pit wall all year like Brendan Hartley has been doing for the first half of this year for Red Bull/Toro Rosso (and Jaime Alguersuari will be doing for the second half of the season) not being able to get any time in in the cars due to the stupid restrictions on testing time!

13

Given that there’s clear evidence that Alonso can’t handle racing alongside a competitive team mate, (Hamilton), there must be a fair chance of it all ending in tears unless Ferrari also replace Massa with someone like Piquet.

Or Alonso will have ensured that his contract says that he will be the clear No 1 driver and will always have a better car – new updates going on his car first, first choice of strategy etc..

Either way, Massa will lose out, unfairly in my view.

14

don’t forget that Man & machine made a F1 champion… both compliment each other and to be world champion with 2nd best car on the grid underneath him, at a last race with single point separate him and Lewis in 2007 prove that Kimi is the best.

however should he choose to switch to rally I will always support him and always know that he will give the maximum… I’m not suprised if one day he will become the only driver with both F1 and rally champion in his resume…

Alonso + Kimi = good team because they do respect each other and both was F1 champion. as we always know Kimi always support equal treatment be given to him and his team mate, and I believe Alonso will not request to became 1st. driver if Kimi is his team mate because he do respect kimi.

Alonso + Massa = repetition of schumacher era in Ferrari with Massa will become 2nd driver, do he become world champion again? time will tell, with Red bull still have andrian newey and vettel with them or Brawn under Ross Brawn …

Kimi + Vettel + best car on the grid = dream team, they’re good fren on & off track. Nobody will be able to beat them.

15

tarun – I am not a massive Massa fan, but to say he crumbled to loose the championship by 1 point? He had to win the last race – He won it ; he couldn’t have done any more – after that it was out of his hands!

16

This is very interesting: which driver would make way for Alonso?
On the face of it you would have to say Raikkonen, but then again, I don’t think Massa and Alonso really get along very well at all do they? remembering back to Germany 2007, that was pretty ugly and I don’t think they have really buried the hatchet have they?
This may be just like 1995/6 with both drivers leaving the team.

17

The least of Ferrari’s problems are their drivers. Fernando wouldn’t be doing any better than Massa or Kimi in that car.

18

Renault Team Radio after Alonso crossed the line, Brazil 2006.

Pat Symonds: “I hope if you are not in a position to win in the future, that you will support us.”

Fernando Alonso: “I will, as long as you don’t paint your cars in red.”

And now Alonso has signed with Ferrari and doing everything to get there as soon as possible.

He might be a 2 time WDC. But he isn’t worth a penny.

19

I think it would be a shame if Raikkonen were to leave now. I feel he has got more out of the car than Massa this year – ouqualifying him by a considerable margin in more races than not and finishing on the podium at Monaco – and his qualifying speed hasn’t translated to the race because of bad luck as much as anything – Turkey, he was heavier than Massa but still ahead on the grid yet had an appalling start from the dirty side of the grid and finished out of the points. At Silverstone he lost out heavily because of strategy (ironically because he made it to Q3), finishing way behind Massa, not because of a lack of speed.

Maybe his motivation has dwindled slightly – who knows? – but he is not crumbling and being destroyed by Massa as some sensationalists might claim. I believe he’s still got the speed and deserves to be in F1 next year, and I don’t see Alonso being significantly faster than Massa, if at all.

20

Interesting opinions, but let’s not forget, Banco Santander is moving to sponsorship Ferrari, as it did in 2007 going to McLaren with Alonso, money is the key….
Banco Santander in a team = Alonso in this Team.
Cheers.

21
The Kitchen Cynic

Y’know, until last year, I had Massa down as being Alesi 2.0

Now I’m not sure I was wrong.

22

I think Ferrari has a strong relationship with Massa he has been part of Ferrari since 2003, as tester and since 2006 as a full driver. Since them he has developed very well and last year was the most improved driver of all the field. He realy put in his place all the press corps, after tons of criticism, he lost the championship on for Ferraris fault, just 2 races were lost by engine failure and the refueling disaster.

Kimi did very well in 2007 and he fought hard in the last stages of the championship, but since them he has been behind Massa.

Ferrari will keep Massa for sure

23

Did you watch the Canadian GP last year? i don’t remember somebody overtaking two cars at once. Also did you watch the Japanese GP in 2007, i think you should…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMTv-3NSQ88&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3ynl0ou3LM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuOXHxNAE2g&feature=related

Massa can’t overtake, maybe he was too much at the front last year…

24

Everyone seems to have forgotten that next year Ross and Button will still be at Brawn, and Newey and Vettel will still be at Red Bull. What indication is there that Ferrari will magically appear at the front of the grid, even with Alonso? The way things stand now, a move by Alonso to Ferrari would be a move from one midfield team to another. Why should he bother?

25
Howard Hughes

James,

You wake up to find that you’ve won the majority shareholding of FIAT in the Italian lottery, and Domenicali is on the phone urgently asking which of the two current Ferrari drivers to retain next year. He needs your decision immediately.

It’s a poor line from Italy, the signal’s about to die and you’ve got only a few seconds to make the choice.

Which one would you fire?

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