Bernie Ecclestone has backed Ferrari to fight back from a challenging 2013 season and challenge Red Bull for honours next year.
Although Fernando Alonso finished second to Sebastian Vettel in the drivers' championship, Ferrari could only take third behind Red Bull and Mercedes in the constructors' standings, having faded away from the front-running pace over the course of the season.
With Ferrari keen to return to the front next year, Ecclestone said he was confident there would be no repeat of the issues faced by the Italian team both on and off track in 2013, when its relationship with Alonso appeared strained at times.
“Ferrari is very pissed off about what happened in 2013,” he told Gazzetta dello Sport
. “I thought Ferrari would win the title and I can't explain why the team wasn't competitive. Alonso, however, drove well and had no problems of his own. Yes he was critical of the team, but the situation didn't improve. However, the dust has settled though and we will see a different Ferrari in 2014.”
As part of its bid to challenge for honours next year, Ferrari will partner Alonso with Kimi Raikkonen, and Ecclestone said that re-signing the Finn could be key to its hopes of success.
“It's a classic pairing that Enzo Ferrari would have liked to have in his team,” he said, “and it will be fun with those two. If Kimi drives like he did on so many occasions this year, it will be a good stimulus to Fernando.
“However, Ferrari needs to have a good car, otherwise it will all just be talk.”
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