Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa are two of the best-known Ferrari drivers of all time.
Although failing to win a WDC for the Scuderia in some of the toughest years for the Prancing Horse, they are regarded as two of the brightest stars in Maranello history. Both have now left the F1 paddock, challenging themselves in Formula E (Massa) and WEC among many other championships (Alonso). However, fate would have it that they both released two separate interviews on the challenges of driving for the guys in red at the same time. Let’s see what they had to say.
It’s never easy when you’re under pressure
In an exclusive interview for the Italian newspaper Il Corriere della Sera, Fernando Alonso was asked to comment on Sebastian Vettel’s performance this year and his difficulties in beating Hamilton’s Mercedes. In the past few months, many commentators argued that Alonso would have won at least another WDC for Ferrari had he had as competitive a car as Vettel. Fernando, however, knows all too well what Sebastian’s been through.
It’s way too easy to talk about this stuff from an outside perspective. Who is at the top of their game always fights for the win and always has everything to lose. And we all make mistakes. Maybe Sebastian has lost some valuable points this season, but so did Hamilton, and he still did better than Kimi Raikkonen. He fought until the very end, and he’s a true champion. When he won four WDC everybody praised him as a superstar and know they do the same with Hamilton. Truth is, it’s never easy when you’re under pressure as much as he is now.
“Ferrari’s obligation to win is a problem”
At the same time, Felipe Massa had another exclusive interview, this time for Autosport.com. In the piece, he highlighted the historical relevance of the Prancing Horse in motorsport and the burden that comes with it.
“A lot of things happen in a difficult way inside Ferrari in terms of pressure. They feel this a lot. The inside of the team was always like this. There was a time that they felt less because they had more results, in the time of Jean Todt. […] After this, things happened in a very different way. Ferrari now is always feeling the pressure and the obligation to win, and this is a problem.”
The future of Scuderia Ferrari
Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa shared a quite controversial and at times tense relationship in the team. Felipe never settled as a #2 driver, and the never ending chase to Red Bull Racing in their years for Ferrari took a toll on everybody. However, they tend to agree when describing team dynamics and when speaking their minds on Ferrari’s future. Namely, they were both very positive when commenting Charles Leclerc and Mattia Binotto’s new roles in Maranello. They knew Binotto in his technical roles during their time as teammates, and they both believe he has the composure and the authority to run the team efficiently without falling victim to the pressure. They’ve also praised Maranello’s choice in nurturing Leclerc and giving him an early chance in the main team. That comes as no surprise, though, since they both aren’t very fond of Kimi Raikkonen…
Having said all that, Fernando and Felipe will always have a special place in the tifosi’s hearts, and we’re all very eager to see their certain success in the new endeavours they’re taking upon.