Alonso: I want to thank Felipe for all the support he has given me

Fernando Alonso with Felipe Massa after the 2013 British GP

Fernando Alonso with Felipe Massa after the 2013 British GP

In Formula 1, having to change team-mates is part of the job. For four seasons, Fernando Alonso has shared the Scuderia Ferrari garage with Felipe Massa.

The day after news broke that the Brazilian would be leaving, the Spaniard had this to say: “I want to thank Felipe for all the support he has given me and the team during this journey we have made together over all these years. Come the end of the season, it will not be easy to say goodbye to a team-mate like him.”

“He has always been truly professional and loyal to the team and I am sure that right to the end, he will do his utmost for the Scuderia that he loves so much.”

Alonso also had a word for Kimi Raikkonen. “I’d like to welcome my new travelling companion: together, starting next year, we will have to tackle a very demanding technical and racing challenge.”

Fernando Alonso with Felipe Massa in 2011

Fernando Alonso with Felipe Massa in 2011

The night before the Raikkonen confirmation Massa tweeted, “From 2014 I will no longer be driving for Ferrari. I would like to thank the team for all the victories and incredible moments experienced together. For next year, I want to find a team that can give me a competitive car to win many more races and challenge for the championship.”

Massa has not won since 2008, when he was overall drivers’ championship runner-up, and has been on the podium just once this year. But he was a loyal teammate to Alonso and on several occasions sacrificed positions to benefit the Spaniard.

Only Michael Schumacher on 179 , has taken part in more grands prix for Ferrari than Massa who has driven in 132. Only three drivers, again Schumacher (72,) Lauda (15) and Ascari (13,) have won more times than the Brazilian and only two, Schumacher of course (58) and Lauda (23,) have secured more pole positions than the Massa(15). He has stood on the podium 36 times, set 14 fastest race laps and scored a total of 756 points. (Ferrari-Apex)

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