F1 »

Zanardi suggests DTM ace as Massa replacement

Former F1 pilot Alex Zanardi offers a new, and unexpected, twist on who should replace Felipe Massa at Ferrari for 2013 and beyond.
Alex Zanardi may be gearing up for his first Olympian appearance in the London Paralympic Games, but that has not prevented him from turning his mind to matters F1.

The charismatic Italian, who has qualified for the handbike events over the next fortnight and has apparently hinted that he would like to return to the Indianapolis 500 once his 'other' sporting interest has reached its pinnacle in London, was naturally asked for his opinion on the debate surrounding Ferrari's F1 line-up for 2013. Although he never drove for the Scuderia - and enjoyed less than sparkling stints with Williams and Jordan around his repeated Champ Car success in the USA - Zanardi sees no reason why an Italian shouldn't be considered as team-mate to Fernando Alonso, although his choice of candidate was not one that many expected.

"My number one choice would be Lewis Hamilton," he told an interview in Italy's Autosprint magazine, "but number two would be [DTM racewinner] Edoardo Mortara.

"If I were Ferrari, I would do with him what McLaren did with Lewis. I see what he is doing in the DTM and, in a series where even the best struggle, he drives like a veteran. I do not think that the category should be a dead-end, and he has come direct from F3."

Zanardi clearly considers Mortara a long-term Ferrari prospect, putting him ahead of current development scheme drivers Sergio Perez and Jules Bianchi, but offers both Paul di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg as potential one-year stop-gap options while Ferrari waits on other drivers.

The Italian also suggested reasons why Massa has failed to return to the sort of form that took him to within seconds of claiming the 2008 world championship, his Hungaroring accident the following year notwithstanding.

"For me, Felipe is a driver with great qualities, but his anxiety has got the better of him," Zanardi claimed, "I think, if he had tried to be himself, and not tried to match Alonso, I'm sure that he would have been on the podium more often. But he is only human being, and more 'Latin' than Fernando in the emotional sense. It's a difficult job to drive for Ferrari, but the team needs to stand by him for the rest of the season, because there are important points to claim. Beyond that, however, I think it is inevitable that they will replace him."




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
21.06.2012- Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM05 and Paul di Resta (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM05
29.07.2012- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27 race winner
Thursday, Alessandro Zanardi (ITA)
Edoardo Mortara     Rosberg Audi
Edoardo Mortara, Team Rosberg, Playboy Audi A5 DTM (2012)[Pic credit: DTM]
29.07.2012- Race, Felipe Massa (BRA) Scuderia Ferrari F2012
24.08.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14-T and Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
24.08.2014- Race, 1st position Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10, 2nd position Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams F1 Team FW36 with Adrian Newey (GBR), Red Bull Racing , Technical Operations Director
24.08.2014- Race, Press conference, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
24.08.2014- Race, 1st position Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10, 2nd position Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams F1 Team FW36 with Adrian Newey (GBR), Red Bull Racing , Technical Operations Director
24.08.2014- Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM07 and Jules Bianchi (FRA) Marussia F1 Team MR03
24.08.2014- Race, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
24.08.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 with punctured rear wheel.
24.08.2014- Race, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
24.08.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 with punctured rear wheel.
24.08.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 with punctured rear wheel.
24.08.2014- Race, 1st position Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10, 2nd position Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams F1 Team FW36
24.08.2014- Race, 1st position Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10, 2nd position Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams F1 Team FW36

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


herowassenna - Unregistered

August 30, 2012 3:14 PM

Is it just me? Since when does Ferrari, the most famous car manufacturer/ racing team on the planet need to take on a pay driver? with Santander and the "silent" sponsor Marlboro, coupled to their incredible merchandising sales, why would they need Perez for anything but talent?

David Chaste - Unregistered

August 30, 2012 1:09 PM

After all the time Ferrari have spent coaching Perez and teaching him the technical aspect of F1 so he could properly setup a car...Why go for someone else? Perez is ready. He also has a huge sponsor behind him, He has a great attitude, he is fast. Well mannered, and did I mention he brings money?



© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.