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Ferrari has lost patience with testing ban

ESPN Staff
December 3, 2012 « Massa feared for Ferrari future | Wins the target in 2013 - Brawn »
Luca di Montezemolo: "We are constructors, not sponsors" © Getty Images
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Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo says he has "run out" of patience with Formula One's in-season testing ban after launching a direct attack on the sport's CEO Bernie Ecclestone.

In-season testing started to be cut back in 2008 and 2009 in order to reduce costs, and with the exception of young driver tests, the only in-season test since the '08 season took place this year at Mugello. That test has been scrapped for 2013 and pre-season testing will remain at just three four-day tests before the season opener in Australia, reducing the overall amount of testing once more.

In 2005, at the height of F1's testing mileage, Ferrari took part in 155 test days during the year and Montezemolo said the shift to very limited testing had stretched his company's patience.

"It cannot be that in this sport you can't test," he said. "We've been saying this for a while and we will repeat it in the appropriate places so for the moment I don't want to add anything else.

"But our patience has run out so someone needs to think about whether they want Formula One still to have companies that invest and consider it the most advanced research bench for its own cars - as Ferrari has always done since 1950. We are constructors, not sponsors: I'm no longer happy that we can't do testing on tarmac and that you can't give any chance for young drivers to emerge."

Montezemolo went on to criticise Ecclestone - as reported on Sunday - making reference to the F1 CEO's recent comments that Ferrari's decision to question the legality of an overtaking manoeuvre by Sebastian Vettel in Brazil was "a joke".

"Since some people have used the expression "It's a joke" in recent days, I would like to say that this [the lack of testing] is the real "joke". Yes, I'm referring to one of Ecclestone's phrases: my father always taught me that you have to have respect your elders, above all when they reach the point that they can no longer control their words. So I will stop there. Certainly, old age is often incompatible with certain roles and responsibilities."