Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo has insisted that the Scuderia
is 'very happy' with its driving line-up of Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen, despite the latter having displayed indifferent form for much of the 2008 Formula 1 campaign.
It was suggested to di Montezemolo in the wake of Raikkonen's poor performances for the majority of the season – the Finn having invariably appeared merely a shadow of the man who only twelve months previously lifted the drivers' laurels for the first time in his career – and Fernando Alonso's superb showings of late in the Renault, that perhaps Maranello had got the wrong combination for 2009.
The Italian, however, is adamant that not only does Ferrari have a line-up capable of securing constructors' glory for the squad ahead of McLaren-Mercedes in the Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos this weekend, but that Raikkonen and Massa are the right drivers to keep the Prancing Horse at the top of the F1 tree next year as well.
Raikkonen's form has seemed to pick up in the last two grands prix, as he both out-qualified and out-raced Massa in Japan and China.
“These types of thoughts we had four years ago,” di Montezemolo confessed in an interview with Italian publication La Gazzetta dello Sport
. “Now we are very happy.
“We are working on the title with a different driver to our champion of last year, and both of them are delivering to us the manufacturers' title.
“If there is one aspect with which we have no problems, it is our drivers. When Raikkonen was having a difficult time in the second part of the season, Massa was in extraordinary form.”
Last month, Massa revealed that he and Raikkonen are not friends away from the circuit and have 'no private relationship', stating: 'If we are together in a meeting, when it is finished he opens the door and is gone' [see separate story – click here