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Ferrari has 'a great basis' to build on - Domenicali

ESPN Staff
March 20, 2013 « McLaren learning from Melbourne - Perez | Maldonado confident Williams has found solution »
Stefano Domenicali: "Seeing Ferrari heading the Constructors' Championship is a great reward" © Getty Images
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Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali says the team has "a great basis" to build on after seeing strong performances from both drivers in Melbourne.

Fernando Alonso's second place was backed up by Felipe Massa looking to have the measure of his team-mate for much of the weekend and eventually finishing fourth after losing out strategically. While the focus has been on Ferrari's car being more competitive than it was at the same stage last season, Domenicali was keen to highlight the importance of Massa's continued good form.

"The first Grand Prix weekend of the season in Australia was a positive one for us as we had previously stated that our objective was to finish on the podium and that target was achieved," Domenicali said. "We have witnessed a weekend that was very unusual, with qualifying on Saturday and Sunday delivering a snapshot of the order that proved to be completely different come Sunday evening after the race. But, it was important to see both our drivers deliver strong performances, as it provides a great basis on which we can build a competitive season and I'm pleased for both of them.

"Seeing Ferrari heading the Constructors' Championship is a great reward for the people who have been working so hard, both here at the track and back home in Maranello. But it's only the first step in a very long season and now is the time to analyse and evaluate all the data from Melbourne in order to be immediately ready for this coming weekend in Malaysia."

Having mentioned Ferrari's target for Melbourne, Domenicali is not willing to make a similar prediction for the Malaysian Grand Prix this weekend.

"Sepang is a very different track and our plan is to make the most of the package that we have. We need to wait and see how our car will behave in what is a totally different environment: the track will make different demands on the cars to the ones we experienced in Australia, with a change in track surface and the unique weather conditions, very hot and humid, will also impact on everyone's performance this weekend. We know what is required here and we will need the usual compromise in terms of downforce levels to deal with both the tighter section and the two long fast straights."