Alonso’s role in Ferrari strategy revealed in pit messages

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Abu Dhabi, 2010

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Abu Dhabi, 2010

The discussions on the Ferrari pit wall that led to crucial decision that cost Fernando Alonso the world championship have been revealed.

The exchange of messages between Alonso and his race engineer Andrea Stella, which was not broadcast during the race, shows the team’s preoccupation with Alonso’s position compared to Webber.

It also shows how Alonso urged the team to use Felipe Massa to hold Webber up.

The radio transcript, published by Corriere della Sera, shows how Ferrari made the mistake of reacting to Webber’s pit stop instead of keeping Alonso out.

Lap 9

Alonso is 1.7 seconds behind Jenson Button and 1.4s ahead of Webber, who is 0.8s ahead of Massa.

Andrea Stella: “You gained three tenths on Webber. Felipe is closing in too.”

Lap 12

Webber pits.

AS: “Webber has stopped and Vettel is also losing ground on Hamilton.”
Fernando Alonso: “If you see that Felipe can overtake him in a lap call him in.”
AS: “We are thinking about it, concentrate on Button.”

Lap 14

Massa pits.

FA: “How did it work with Felipe?”
AS: “He came out behind Webber”

Lap 15

Ferrari tell Alonso to pit on lap 16.

AS: “OK, come in [to the pits] now.”
FA: “OK”
AS: “You will come out close to Webber. You are in front”.

Lap 17

Alonso is 1.1s ahead of Webber and 1.5s behind Vitaly Petrov.

FA: “What’s the situation?”
AS: “We have to overtake the Renault in front, he won’t stop any more. After that it’s Rosberg.”

Lap 22

Alonso is 0.5s behind Petrov. None of the cars that were in front of him before he pitted have come in yet.

AS: “I know you are giving everything but it’s critical to overtake Petrov.”

2010 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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179 comments on Alonso’s role in Ferrari strategy revealed in pit messages

  1. Kayumanggi said on 23rd November 2010, 5:04

    Wow, that’s a long one.

    If words can kill, Alonso would’ve die maybe thirty times over. So Ferrari, let’s just say, were not very good at choosing the right words, unlike Red Bull and McLaren. Not only did it penalized and mortified Ferrari, but it acted as a gleaming white shield that the other teams overly and overtly used and abused.

    He’s definitely faster than his teammate. And afterwards, Massa wasn’t the same and helped proved his critics right.

    So, Red Bull was saying that there will be no team orders and they will let their drivers race. Right, tell that to Webber when he exclaimed, “Not bad for a number 2 driver” after winning one. That’s a daring and brave driver filled with unabashed emotion. And tell that to me again as the images of the infamous nose job and wheels banging keep playing in my head.

    Same thing being claimed by McLaren. Right, save fuel, because there’s only so much of it to go around.

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