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Sunday, December 19, 2010

2010 eval: Ferrari

JEREZ DE LA FRONTERA, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 10: Ferrari transporters are seen in the paddock during winter testing at the at the Circuito De Jerez on February 10, 2010 in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain. (Photo by Vladimir Rys/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Synopsis: A 1-2 to open the season looked to set the table for the Scuderia, but the Prancing Horse soon found itself playing third fiddle to Red Bull and McLaren after a string of disappointing results. The team orders controversy in Germany resulted in another 1-2, and a strong final third of the season saw Fernando Alonso haul himself up into the driver’s championship race. A bad strategy call in Abu Dhabi, however, left the Spaniard on the outside looking in.

Points: 396

Highlight: Alonso’s win at Monza, Ferrari’s first at the track since 2006, kicked off the team’s late season resurgence (three wins and two thirds), and gave the Spaniard the inside track in the driver’s championship.

Jul 25, 2010 - Hockenheim, Germany - Winner FERNADO ALONSO (L) and second place winner FELIPE MASSA of Ferrari after the 2010 Formula One World Championship, Rd 11 at Hockenheimring, German Grand Prix.

Lowlight: “OK, so, Fernando is faster than you. Can you confirm you understood that message?”


July 25, 2010 - Hockenheim, Germany - (L to R): Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari and second placed FERNANDO ALONSO (ESP) Ferrari in the FIA Press Conference...Formula One World Championship, Rd 11, German Grand Prix, Race Day.

  • Fernando Alonso again proved he is one of a handful of drivers who can wrangle more out of a car that it was meant to deliver. Results-wise, he and his teammate seemed pretty evenly matched in the early going, but he was clearly getting the better of Felipe Massa in the three races leading up to the controversial German Grand Prix. Once Ferrari had put all of its eggs in Alonso’s basket, the Spaniard was able to make a run at the driver’s title often without the support of his teammate, but Ferrari’s decision to cover Mark Webber in Abu Dhabi opened the door for Sebastian Vettel to take the championship.
  • Felipe Massa completed a stunning recovery from his life-threatening injury in Hungary in 2009, and was taking the fight to his highly-touted teammate before a string of poor results led the team to seemingly order him aside in Germany, ironically one year after the Hungary accident. Massa’s interest in his support role looked to fade over the remainder of the season, he ultimately finished sixth in the championship.

July 25, 2010 - Hockenheim, Germany - Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari in the post race FIA Press Conference...Formula One World Championship, Rd 11, German Grand Prix, Race Day.

A look ahead: Ferrari insists despite the error in strategy, heads will not roll among the team leadership. Additionally, it insists both drivers start 2011 on equal footing. Time will tell. It will be interesting to see if the Massa is a “fragile” as rumored, or if he can step out of the shadow of famous Ferrari number twos and take the challenge to Alonso. The press already have his seat under threat, with names like Mark Webber and Robert Kubica thrown around as possible replacements. One thing is certain, Alonso can make a run at the driver’s title alone, but the constructors championship, far more coveted in Maranello, will only come if two drivers are scoring points. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six


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