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I was interested to get some opinions on what you think are the unluckiest, least remembered (considering they drove for a premier team) and most underrated drivers to have raced for Scuderia Ferrari. I am a pretty casual fan so feel free to enlighten me with more expert opinions.
Ivan Capelli, could also be in unluckiest list
Also is Luca Badoer the consensus opinion as worst driver to ever race for Ferrari in F1?
Surely Jean Alesi must qualify for being the unluckiest and being underrated? I’ve lost count how many times the guy would deliver superb performances (sometimes in terrible machinery) in races only for his car to snap while leading or in a decent grid postion. I mean, he retired from the lead at Spa 91, Monza 94 and 95, Monaco 95 and 96. There are probably more as well…
Luca Badoer should be at the top of the unlucky list.
Almost given the dream drive with Ferrari ten years earlier in ’99 when he wasn’t completely race rusted (like he was in ’09), but finished out the season with Minardi anyway and almost bagged a 4th at the Nurburgring. It was difficult to not only watch him struggle to be competitive for Ferrari in a race scenario, but to have so many fans and pundits kick him while he was down wasn’t enjoyable in the least.
Alesi was also unlucky from the moment he joined Ferrari over Williams.
Good thread. Eddie Irvine is fascinating haha. Not just his personality, but how he got to Ferrari in the first place? I would like to know that. And how close he came to being champion. And then how he just kind of quietly went away before his time maybe?
I’d say Villeneuve and Bandini were two of the unluckier drivers to race in a Formula 1 car built by Ferrari. Especially because they both died in one.
Unluckiest – Alesi, Villenueve and Massa
Underrated – Alesi, Pironi and Irvine
Least remembered (or at least not remembered enough) – Badoer, Raikkonnen, Alesi
I’d say a lot of pre-70s Ferrari drivers are forgotten these days. Along with Johansson (before I started watching old BBC coverage on YouTube, I too kept forgetting he drove for Ferrari, or McLaren for that matter.) Phil Hill even won a WDC and isn’t mentioned that often when people are talking about Ferrari.
Wolfgang von Trips is another good candidate for unluckiest driver for Ferrari, crashing fatally in the race you need a 3rd to secure a WDC isn’t very lucky in my books. Jacky Ickx also suffered some terrible luck with Ferrari. Clay Regazzoni, Michele Alboreto, and some others probably expected more from their time at Ferrari, especially Jean Alesi, who I personally consider one of the biggest wasted talents of the 90s.
As for Luca Badoer, I still feel bad for the guy. The man basically drove his butt off to help Schumacher be as successful as he was, but instead of people praising him for his work as a test driver, they bash him for being unsuccessful in a car that Raikkonen only managed one win in, was hard to handle and when Fisichella took over from him, he barely did any better, despite scoring a pole in Spa. He deserved a shot in 1999, he would have scored points for sure.
Fisichella’s pole in 2009 (Belgian GP) was with Force India not Ferrari as you seemed to imply
@tmekt, that’s what I forgot to type, thanks. He managed pole and p2 in a Force India, but the rest of the season, he too didn’t manage a proper result in the F 60.
I’ve read that Jacky Ickx was a great driver who could have been a worthy world champion, but it just never came together for him. Was Massa unlucky? A little, but, 2009 crash aside, only in 2008.
Was Jacky Ickx particularly unlucky? He had his best years at Ferrari and then sort of slid off the radar but I feel his intense program of sports car racing maybe split his talents?
I admit I had completely forgotten about Fisichella!
In terms of championship, Ickx, Villeneuve, Pironi , Alboreto, Barichello, Massa.
Unluckiest: Chris Amon (Without a shadow of a doubt.)
Least remembered: Gianni Morbidelli (Yes, he drove for Ferrari. Look it up.)
Underrated: Tony Brooks (I think most people agree on this – certainly in this thread.)
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