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Raikkonen will lift Alonso - Webber
Mark Webber believes the arrival of Kimi Raikkonen at Ferrari will lift Fernando Alonso's performances next season.
Alonso has outpaced and outscored current team-mate Felipe Massa comfortably over their three-and-a-half seasons together, with Massa only scoring more than 50% of Alonso's total on one occasion so far. While the return of Raikkonen could be seen as unsettling, Webber says he expects it to push Alonso to produce better performances in qualifying especially.
"I think Fernando will see it as a positive thing," Webber told Autosport. "The positives for me are that Fernando needs to be pushed more on Saturday afternoons; which he will live for. Kimi will lift him and help him to get a bit more out of himself on Saturday afternoons. On Sundays there is no question, we know Fernando is a brilliant racer, but on Saturdays Kimi will lift him to another level.
Break from the norm
- Whether a more experienced Alonso has learnt from his infamous year at McLaren remains to be seen. If he has then it could push him to an even higher level. If he hasn't, it could mark the beginning of the end of his Ferrari career.
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"Fernando will also see it as an opportunity to do well against Kimi. He will back himself in this situation."
However, Webber warned Alonso will not be happy if Raikkonen doesn't do his fair share of work behind the scenes.
"The team will have to be careful on the technical front. Kimi we know is a phenomenal guy, but it will be interesting to see if Fernando feels it will be even in terms of the work rate going on. It is a big, big technical challenge next year. Both drivers have to put a lot into that and I don't think Fernando will be too happy if it is all one sided."