Domenicali: When Alonso crossed the line I reprimanded him in private

Stefano Domenicali with Fernando Alonso

Stefano Domenicali with Fernando Alonso

Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali has revealed that he intervened to bring Fernando Alonso to order and defend the team after the Spaniard’s criticism of the Scuderia in July.

Interviewed by two Italian fans in a meeting arranged by the Gazzetta Dello Sport newspaper at the Ferrari factory, he shed light on a period which many believe marks the beginning of the end of Alonso’s tenure at Maranello.

The Spaniard, a double champion with Renault, has been critical of Ferrari’s performance and was publicly reprimanded by Ferrari chairman Luca Di Montezemolo in July.

“When I need to reprimand Alonso, as would also be the case with my engineers, I do it in private and in a harsh manner if need be,” said Domenicali when asked why Alonso was allowed to be so critical.

Fernando Alonso was critical of Ferrari earlier this season

Fernando Alonso was critical of Ferrari earlier this season

“But externally, I will always defend the team. When he crossed the line, president Montezemolo intervened and in private, so did I,” he added.

The principal defended the use of team orders in favour of Alonso and also the team’s decision to retain Brazilian Felipe Massa this season despite his dip in performance.

Massa is leaving at the end of the year to make way for the team’s returning 2007 champion Kimi Raikkonen.

“If Felipe was unable to deliver the performance we hoped for, it was mainly down to a hyper-sensitivity to a car that was too nervous at the rear, but in 2008 he almost took the title and I consider him as a World Champion,” said Domenicali.

Fernando Alonso with Luca di Montezemolo during the Italian GP weekend

Fernando Alonso with Luca di Montezemolo during the Italian GP weekend

“We took Raikkonen because we wanted more. When we replaced him with Alonso, he was not happy and so he returns with a great desire to do well.”

The Italian did not rule out Ferrari one day having an Italian driver in its line-up, despite a notable aversion to that over the years. Italy currently has no Formula 1 drivers despite the national  passion for the sport’s most glamour team.

“We feel this responsibility, so we created the Academy for youngsters. With Antonio Fuoco and Raffaele Marciello, in whom we are investing, this year we have won two championships,” said Domenicali.

“Will they drive a Ferrari one day? I hope so. But we need to find the right categories to get there.” (Reuters)

Subbed by AJN.

  • jurrabi

    I wouldn’t say posting in Ferrari’s website, reflected in all international sports and F1 media, is a private reprimand…

  • Alonso_is_Slow

    Alonso has already lost the support from Ferrari team in 2012 after his anti-team comments. This driver will never be able to get the performance out of the team.

    Alonso being both slow and de-motivating, it is very unlikely that he will get close to a title any time.

  • fools

    @jurrabi

    Right! lol

  • fools

    I dont understand why all eyes are on Alonso making headlines yet to a degree, always trying to be slashed by the media. Heck the world knows he is the BEST driver. Yet, 1 week its about his donations, new bike crew, then a slap with how he was reprimanded but not in private…it was leaked publicly. But who wouldnt bitch about a car that’s 1.5 seconds slower whilst still defeating other rivals except Vettel due to there better car.

    Heck, Vettel was also reprimanded by RB about his “finger fist gesture”. So where is that article? Yet I just read yesterday RB is doing there best to get Vettel more fans to stop the “booing”

    If RB is doing there best to better there fans base for Vettel. It goes to show why Alonso pulls more fans and is much more admired as the better driver. Obviously media is part of the sport but some media just try to hit the beehive

  • haha

    Those who say Alonso as the most fans, I doubt it, Kimi is da bomb :D. But it’s like politics in a way, the biggest cheaters get the most “votes” :p

  • sebolonso

    Like Samurai in last Years TP questionary:).

    Read between the lines. Domenicali is totally fed up with Samurai. Only thing that keeps him in the Ferrari seat is Santander finance, otherwise he would have been fired.

  • flaf1

    @sebolonso

    “otherwise he would be fired”
    lol. if it wasn’t for alonso ferrari would be battling force india and sauber instead of 2nd in contructors and drivers championship.
    you must have missed last years championship. the only driver who has made 2010 and 2012 worth watching was alonso. if alonso is fired or quits ferrari they will be lucky to finish 6th next year.

  • flaf1

    @alonso_is_slow

    if alonso is so slow what does that say about all the drivers in faster cars who are all behind him in points? they must be really slooooooooooooowwwwwwwwww.

  • K-15-

    Cant wait to see this spanish omelette being devoured by the iceman in 2014.

  • Elf

    Pathetic parrotting again and again Alonso is the best just to feel yourself better for a racer that goes no higher than second no matter help he gets. Just think what media would have said if Vettel called his mechanis idiots, blaming the Bulls and the car, and all Alonso like politics.

  • sebolonso

    Ferrari will let Alonso stay in the seat only because of mega bucks Santander is paying for the ride. Nevertheless, next season Alonso’s role is supporting to new lead driver that is Kimi. Santander nor Alonso can manipulate the result any longer, because Shell is backing Kimi in his Ferrari come back.

    Poor outsider Massa, someone had a leak on his shoes for four seasons.

  • otiva

    @ flaf1 & fools…spot on.
    You take Alonso out of the formula & suddenly the world is boring…and hopefully by the time he decides to retire (after a long time), there will be another driver in his calibre. He is simply a complete immaculate perfectionist

  • Alonso_is_Slow

    He may be a perfectionist, but he is very far from being a a match for other drivers in any dimensions.

  • Henson

    @ Alonso_is_slow

    You are right. Alonso cannot match Vettel’s preference for effeminate yellow painted hair, or Raikkonen’s like for getting drunk when things don’t go his way.

  • IowaF1fan

    I think Stefano is a good team principal, and Alonso a great driver is self centered, i see a team next year bonding with Kimi and and a distancing Alonso, hope i’m but just a prediction. Go Ferrari!

  • flaf1

    ferrari are a team living off their past. they have designed mediocre cars since 2009. their lucky alonso is on the team. every driver out their complains about there car. well except vettel who has by far and away the best car. domenicali should worry about who designs the car not who drives it.

  • Alonso_is_Slow

    Alonso is the only lead driver not to deliver ferrari a championship.

    After all the championship s in the 80’s and 90’s and schumacher in the 2000’s, the pickings are slim in the alonso era.

  • flaf1

    @alonso_is_slow

    alonso has been in by far the worst ferrari compared to schumacher and kimi. but it seems you will never admit it. you better pray to god when vettel (your favorite driver) gets to ferrari they can build him a car 1.5 seconds faster cause he will need a gap that big to be champion with them.

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