- Brazilian Grand Prix
Ferrari hoped for more - Domenicali
Stefano Domenicali admitted that Ferrari hoped for more from the final grand prix of the season in Brazil, but that McLaren and Red Bull were just too strong.
Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa lined up fifth and seventh respectively for the race, and while Alonso improved to third early on a lack of pace on the medium tyre ultimately cost him any chance of a podium as he finished fourth. Domenicali said that while the result wasn't unexpected, it was a shame that Alonso didn't finish in the top three drivers for the season after Mark Webber beat him to third place in the final standings.
"We had hoped and wanted to end the season with at least one more podium finish, even if we knew it would be very difficult given the quality of opponent we had ahead of us after qualifying," Domenicali said. "Fernando came close to achieving our wish, fighting to the bitter end, but he had to settle for looking up at the podium, which along with Webber's win, means he won't be off to India to take part in the FIA Gala for the top three finishers in the Drivers' Championship: it's a shame because given how he performed this year - he even scored more points than in 2010 - he definitely deserved better."
Massa, meanwhile, was forced in to a two-stop strategy due to a puncture discovered after qualifying, and Domenicali praised his drive while saying that he would have beaten Lewis Hamilton regardless of his gearbox failure.
"Felipe was forced to adopt a strategy which looked slower on paper, but he had a good race all the same and would have finished fifth on track even without having to wait for the retirement of the second McLaren. Now we can definitely file away a year where our performance was insufficient by our standards and think only of next season."
Domenicali also congratulated Red Bull and McLaren for their respective seasons, and praised Hamilton for reconciling with Felipe Massa after the race.
"Once again, we congratulate those who did a better job than us and we look forward to facing them again next year, when we will try to be the best of the lot. That is our target and we have no intention of hiding the fact. We have weeks of hard work ahead of us and we will only start to see the fruits of our labours in February, when it's time to fire up the engines again. Finally, let me say I am happy to hear that Lewis came round to see Felipe during his press meeting, which thus puts an end to all the recent misunderstandings."