SETANTA NEWS

Ferrari rule out Alonso-Vettel link-up

by Michelle Fortune , 16 January 2013

Ferrari have no plans to bring in Sebastian Vettel to drive alongside Fernando Alonso, because it could prove damaging for the team.


Felipe Massa will continue as the Ferrari number two in 2013 with widespread speculation claiming Vettel will join the team ahead of the 2014 season.

With Alonso contracted to Ferrari until 2016, president Luca di Montezemolo has all but ruled out Vettel joining the team while the Spaniard is in situ and team principal Stefano Domenicali believes bringing in another top driver could do untold damage instead of making them a force.

"We have always said, and I think that the president [Luca di Montezemolo] also declared, that a dream team is something extraordinary if it is well managed and if things work well," Domenicali told reporters at Ferrari's Wrooom media event at Madonna di Campiglio in Italy.

"For now, I think that this is not our goal. We have to maximise the balance of our performance of the team. We must be very careful.

"It is not just in F1 because it is true also in the world of sport. If you put all the number ones together around the table it can be more damaging than positive. So for the time being, this is not our goal."

Alonso has been the recognised number one at Ferrari following his arrival from Renault in 2010 but he found himself under pressure from the Brazilian towards the end of the 2012 season.

Massa ended the season as one of the highest-scoring drivers and in keeping with his role as number two he took a grid penalty at the United States Grand Prix in a bid to help Alonso.

A similar situation could arise in 2013 but Domenicali insists the team is not concerned about Massa threatening Alonso'a position.

"I consider it is a strength for us," he added. "If you look from another angle, last year, in the first half of the season, we were not able to maximise the points and that cost us a lot in the second half.

"The fact that Fernando and Felipe are coping with it very well is a strong point we have in the team. And if we compare this situation with other teams, it is the best situation we can have.

"To count on a Felipe that has finished the championship in such a way, I believe is a good motivation point for Fernando. At the end of the day, no one can sit on anything.

"It is important to push from the inside in a very constructive way; to have this kind of atmosphere in the team is a positive thing. You can count on transparency in the relationship, and that is something we have."

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