Ferrari deny Alonso-Massa rift

Ferrari insist their drivers have not fallen out after the Chinese Grand Prix.

Fernando Alonso passed team mate Felipe Massa on the way into the pit lane during the Shanghai race.

Ferrari claim quotes from Massa after the race were taken out of context by some media and used to present a false impression that Massa was unhappy with Alonso. A statement from the team read:

Some news outlets used some statements by Felipe Massa after the Chinese GP, which were somehow taken out of context: obviously someone is trying to create bad blood between the two drivers after Fernando Alonso’s overtaking manoeuvre of his team mate at the pit lane entrance on lap 19. Furthermore both drivers were very clear after the race: this episode won’t change anything at all regarding the relationship between the two. Felipe and Fernando are travelling back to Europe on the same flight, together with the Scuderia’s technicians.

A spokesperson for the team from Maranello said on the phone from Shanghai: ??What happened yesterday with Fernando overtaking Felipe was just an episode in a race and I should be treated as such. Our drivers know how to behave on the track and they have shown it also this time. Naturally both want to win and they both bring fighting spirit to the races, while respecting a very simple rule: the team’s well-being is of more importance than the individual’s well-being.??
Ferrari statement

Given Alonso’s track record with his team mates it’s hardly surprising to see such speculation.

But it is surprising that the team have bothered to deny it – doing so only keeps the story alive for another day. And if things do blow up between the two drivers in the future, Ferrari’s insistence that everything is hunky-dory right now will be viewed very differently.

Read more: Pit lane pass hands advantage to Alonso (Chinese GP team-by-team: Ferrari)

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63 comments on Ferrari deny Alonso-Massa rift

  1. Stathis said on 20th April 2010, 10:51

    This comparison between Massa and Alonso is entertaining. To read that Massa is a ‘nicer guy’ than Alonso, and to read that Alonso is far more aggressive is comical.

    The way I see it, when Massa gets beaten, he comes up with all kinds of escuses as to why he didnt get the results needed. Alonso’s feedback when he has’nt come up trumps are far more logical in his remarks and is far more level headed.

    As for Alonso’s apparently aggressive driving ?? Have anyone seen the way Hamilton weaves through the pack ? His a genius, and I would go as far as saying more savvy than Alonso in his overtaking. But…His also ridden up Alonso’s back side in (forget which race) 2008, and also ran a red light and rammed the rear end of Raikkonnen did he not ? Alonso’s overtaking ability may not be the best in the field, but he makes up for it in his uncanny ability to almost never make mistakes. He is, to me, the most complete driver out there. He may not be the quickest, or the slickest, or the ballsiest, but he does everything well, and in my opinion does it best.

    • GWbridge said on 20th April 2010, 11:55

      Why so defensive about Alonso? There’s general agreement that he’s an excellent driver and as good as anyone in the sport. I don’t really see much criticism in the preceding posts. I will say this much, however. It wasn’t very “canny” to start the race ahead of the other guys, and that move at the entrance to the pits looked pretty dicey to me in such slippery conditions. If he had taken out both Ferraris and blocked the pit entrance, there would have been hell to pay. Still, he’s one of the greats, and I enjoy watching him, as well.

      • BeyondThePale said on 20th April 2010, 23:17

        Two big and rather silly mistakes when starting this year:
        -Last Sunday’s jump-start in Shanghai (Well, he said it’s the first time it happened to him and as far as I can’t remember it’s true)
        -In Melbourne he put his left tyres on top of the white paint in the grid, which caused a serious loss of grip and a disastrous start.

        Add to that the problem in the quali in Malasya, which was partly a team mistake and partly his mistake, as he ackwnoledged himself. btw a really brave race with the broken gearbox… for 0 points and a broken motor

        This leaves only 1 race out of 4 with a non-disastrous star. Which btw he won, thanks also to Vettel’s breakup. And 3 races in which he put up a real good show coming up from the bottom.

        Real WDCs tend to win a lot of boring races straight from the pole instead of struggling all the time to recover from their mistakes. Sure, Ayrton Senna had more entertaining value than Prost, and Hamilton has more than Button. But more titles go to the likes of Prost and Button.

    • Patrickl said on 20th April 2010, 11:56

      “his uncanny ability to almost never make mistakes”

      Like his start :)

      I know what you mean though, but still Alonso does make a fair amount of mistakes too. He’s no Heidfeld.

      I think Alonso and Hamilton are pretty similar. Both racers, both taking risks and thus also facing the inevitable mishap due to taking risks.

  2. Stathis said on 20th April 2010, 12:07

    Not really being defensive. Well maybe ? But I was just giving my opinion on the Massa/Alonso saga, and also added a bit of extra with Hamilton lol.

    That move in the pits on Massa may have been risky, but the guy has been sniffing Massa’s rectum for the last 2 grand prix’s when he clearly had a speed advantage. He obviously had enough and finally made a move, because Massa wasn’t going to hand it to him that’s for sure.

    Alonso and Hamilton may be similiar in ability, but I think Alonso has a much cooler head on the race track when making decisions. And I think his track record shows it.

    Yes I may be biased towards Alonso, But…I was routing for Shuey back in 05 n 06 even though I own a Renault and am a Renault fan.

    Ive simply come to admire who I think is the best driver in the field. After all, it is and has always been about who is the best driver. The brand of car I believe is secondary in most peoples view.

  3. The Genuine Jim said on 20th April 2010, 12:41

    Whether there is a rift forming or not, the media are quite pathetically desperate to create one aren’t they. ‘Bout what I’d expect though.

  4. DGR-F1 said on 20th April 2010, 13:20

    I like the phrase ‘somehow taken out of context’. Either they were reported in context or not, there can be no ‘somehow’ about it. Or is that maybe a bad translation of Ferrari’s spokesperson?
    This statement really does read as a dose of Italian double-speak, as the drivers can be on the same plane, but they don’t need to be sitting together or talking. Maybe the technicians are there to keep them apart?
    As for the drivers knowing how to behave on the track, Shanghai has made it perfectly clear that however good Massa does, Alonso will beat him!
    I’m sorry if that offends anyone, but that statement really is asking for it…… :-)

  5. Chris said on 20th April 2010, 14:54

    I was hoping for something like this the minute Ferrari signed Alonso. Domenicali isn’t equipped to handle this situation. Here’s to a long, hot summer and lots of Ferrari blow ups!

    • Todfod said on 20th April 2010, 16:09

      In Alonso’s defense, he took advantage of Massa’s wheelspin to gain the advantage into the pitlane. If Hamilton/button, rosberg/schumacher, vettel/webber or any other team pairing found themselves in the same position it would have ended the same.

      This event is just being blown out of proportion. I do not blame Alonso for taking advantage of the situation. Additionally, I think he would not want to be stuck behind a much slower teammate.

  6. Fer no.65 said on 20th April 2010, 16:39

    what record with his team mates????

    he had no trouble with Fisi, Trulli, Piquet and, so far, Massa… it’s only the sparks at Mclaren (which wasn’t just because of Lewis, that’s for sure) that he’s now dubbed as a “bad team mate”?????

    can’t stand it. Maybe he’s not friends with them, but apart from Lewis he had little to no problems…!

    • PatrickL said on 21st April 2010, 13:52

      Alonso had problems with Trulli and Fisichella too. The thing is, Alonso only has problems with others if they beat him. Granted that didn’t happen a whole lot while he was at Renault.

  7. claudioff said on 20th April 2010, 16:52

    I listenned to a interview with Massa just after the race. He said “I commited a mistake on the previous curve and Alonso was side by side during the whole straight before the pit lane entrace”. He had not a normal voice. What I did feel was that he accepted the move. But what is really bothering him is the fact that Alonso is constantly racing better than him (apart the starts). If needed, he will even support Alonso to win the championship, as like he did for Kimi in interlagos (2007), just for the opportunity of keeping a sit in Ferrari.

  8. rachel said on 21st April 2010, 20:17

    Ferrari are being far too defensive about this “situation” I really hope and expect to see Alonso out of Ferrari by the end of the season, the man brings nothing but politics to teams. Ferrari shouldn’t have touched him with a bargepole after what he did at Mclaren.

    • Patrickl said on 21st April 2010, 22:50

      Alonso can bring them championships. That’s what they hired him for. Don’t think they will really care if Massa gets upset.

  9. JohnBt said on 22nd April 2010, 5:51

    I hope Alonso stays that way, ruthless and nasty. The nice guy image in F1 dosen’t fit well, racers are like gladiators. But we’re here to watch racers not nice guys. Tell me if Ayrton Senna is a nice guy, go check him out, but fans loved him the most right? Massa has to up his game or else he will be left behind, F1 has no compassion for slower drivers within team-mates. In fact it’s a business, bring in the profits and you will be promoted. Harsh but true. Noticed how menacing Alonso looked with his unshaven image, machismo!

  10. Soumya said on 22nd April 2010, 12:35

    Senna more entertaining than prost? only bcoz of his mercurial character probably. And if Kimi had pulled such a one on Massa last yr,it wud hav gone unnoticed.

  11. Chaz said on 22nd April 2010, 16:36

    I’d like to hear those statements that were taken out of context and I would like to hear the team radio from both drivers and the team as I am curious to knowat what point the team knew when to change the tyres to Alonso’s for the pit stop…

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