• Oct 15, 2009

From his brief tenure at McLaren, we know that Fernando Alonso has a bit of trouble getting along with his teammates. Especially when he doesn't get the clear preferential treatment as the team's #1 driver. After all, as has often been said, a driver's teammate is his chief rival. So after Ferrari confirmed that Alonso and Felipe Massa would be put on equal footing, we smelled some trouble a-brewin'. But we didn't expect it to start at least until the beginning of next season. Turns out, that was a bit premature, as some cracks in the relationship between the two teammates-to-be have already started to show.

Speaking with a group of journalists in his native Brazil where the F1 circus is preparing for this weekend's grand prix, Felipe Massa said with "absolute certainty" that Alonso knew about the plan to have wingman Nelson Piquet crash to hand him the controversial victory. That's a pretty hefty charge levied by his future teammate, and Ferrari naturally scrambled to issue a clarification (which you can read after the jump) but you can't take back what's already been said.

Massa was suitably – and vocally – upset when the Crashgate story broke, because without Alonso's ill-earned victory, Massa would have won the championship last year, instead of losing to Lewis Hamilton by one point at the last corner of the last lap of the last race of the season. Better luck next year, gents.

[Sources: Autosport; Ferrari | Image: Vanderlei Almeida/AFP/Getty]

PRESS RELEASE:

Massa: "Singapore? Enough, let's look ahead"

Sao Paulo, 14 October 2009 - Felipe Massa's comments at a lunch with Brazilian journalists is causing some uproar on the internet. When asked if Alonso might have known about the details of the Singapore affair the Brazilian driver confirmed. Afterwards, level-headed, he wanted to be more specific via the Ferrari website. "What I've said is the outcome of a hunch I've had and is not based on any concrete evidence," Felipe said. "The FIA World Council announced that there was no indication that Fernando may have been informed of what had happened and I respect this outcome. Obviously I'm very disappointed about what transpired last year in Singapore: I have already said several times what I thought about it and now it's time to close that chapter and to look to the future. What is certain is that this episode will not marr in any way the relationship I'll have with Fernando when we will be teammates."

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  • 21 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Massa's pit stop lost him the race, then later in the race he spun while trying to make up time. On the other hand, like Astropods said, I'm sure Alonso knew what was going on or he would have made a big fuss out of the pit strategy.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Masa is just afraid for his job, and asserting himself early if he is in fact going to be Alonsos team mate. It is an early pissing match. These guys will make horrible team mates - look at Alonsos track record, throwing temper tantrums if he feels the other team mate is getting more attention.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Alonso definitely knew about the plan for Piquet to crash and they must think we're all complete idiots to believe he didn't. I'm sure he would have allowed them to run him on that "mysterious" pit strategy knowing that without a yellow he would be out to dry. Massa is just saying what we all know but because of some deal or just because FIA loves Alonso so much he got off w/ nothing...
      • 5 Years Ago
      Frontal lobe injuries affect personality. People become impetuous, lose inhibition. Maybe something isn't right with FM.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I was about to mention that, isn't Massa normally diplomatic? Maybe Ferrari should check him into a clinic for further damage control.

      • 5 Years Ago
      It may look dumb for anyone one involved to speak about it now, but think... what's F1 without drama? what better way to keep it in the news and boost awareness of the series and events besides drama?

      It's all good. Every driver is in it to win, by whatever means. If Alonso did know, and since he's had two championships already, if he wants to be a good man, I'd say he owes Masa one. But, not likely, because they are all there to win... and it's good for us, the fans.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Alonso, as talented as he is, seems like a douchey prima dona to me...
      • 5 Years Ago
      That will be the team to watch next year! Two little guys with Spanish curses, sobs and snivels bitch-slapping each other every time they are not in their cars. I wonder if they will be walked by their moms to the grid.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Since when does Felipe Massa speak Spanish?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Alonso is a great driver but he's going to have his hands full with Massa back at 100%.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Of course he knew about it!?!?

      http://www.carnorama.com
      • 5 Years Ago
      "without Alonso's ill-earned victory, Massa would have won the championship last year"

      That's true only if Massa's crew doesn't screw him out of the win with that awful pit stop. If Alonso hadn't won and Massa had still had his problems, then Hamilton finishes second instead of third and could have finished seventh in Brazil and still won the championship.

      This of course leaves aside the steward's decision at Spa which gave Massa a win he didn't earn on the track and demoted Hamilton to third.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I saw that race last year and Massa lost that race because his pit crew f'd him up in his pitstop! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cHuhgC9tEyo

      Sure, the crash brought everyone to pit and that may have something to do with it, but blaming his title on Alonso is a bit of stretch!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Massa is not blaming Alonso. He is saying that he had to know. Who knows, maybe Alonso is just dumb. As dumb as Massa for shooting his mouth off now.
        • 5 Years Ago
        True, Nando may have known after the fact but that wasn't part of the investigations by the FIA. Its obvious after the crash many of Renault's engineers also realized what had happened but who is going to come out and blow it for their own team? Like they dont rock the boat.

        So massa isnt completely wrong to say Alonso might have known. Its a matter of how and when. In knowing before or after the fact there is a huge difference. The later maybe true with the former being proven untrue.

        http://www.alonso-planet.com
      • 5 Years Ago
      What a load of tripe in these comments. Alonso as a bad team mate? Huh? He developed the McLaren that Hamilton somehow managed to not lose the championship in. Massa will not match Alonso in the coming seasons, he just doesn't have what it takes. Just like Schumi in his last two! After the recent comments from Massa about "losing" his world championship because of this I think it's time for some additional catscan's. There's definitely something not right with that boy.
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