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Kimi and Alonso will work together for Ferrari - Domenicali
Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali has defended his decision to employ Kimi Raikkonen alongside Fernando Alonso next year, saying they will work together in the interest of the team.
After four years of Felipe Massa acting as a subservient No.2 driver to Alonso, Raikkonen has been brought into the team and is expected to give his new team-mate a run for his money. But Domenicali said both drivers will still have to do what's best for the team and that the decision did not mark a change in the way Ferrari is run.
"I don't think it is a change of philosophy," he said. "All the drivers working for Ferrari know the main interest is the team and they consider that the priority. It is normal and absolutely imperative that everyone wants to do the maximum - it is the nature of every driver to be in front of the others - but this is the way that we have been working in our history and this is what is going to happen into the future."
Asked about comments from rivals that the Alonso/Raikkonen pairing will end in tears, Domenicali said: "Maybe they have fear because we are strong. This is part of the psychological war that is part of the environment of Formula One. It's not that interesting for me because I don't listen, but everybody can say whatever they want. If someone wants to change something I will not change my style from within the team, but, funnily enough, you will never hear me talking about the others."
Alonso insists he has always started the season on equal footing with Massa and said the alternative to Ferrari's approach was that of McLaren, which saw him tie on points with team-mate Lewis Hamilton when he was driving there in 2007 and finish one point behind eventual champion Raikkonen.
"We start in Australia always - both at Ferrari and when I was at Renault as well - in the same conditions. The cars are the same and we try to score as many points as possible and sometimes you have better or worse luck. Then you might arrive in the final race of the championship with one of the drivers lucky enough to score enough points to fight for the championship and Ferrari try to help that possibility. Some other teams don't try to help that possibility and they lose the championship - I was in one of them [in 2007]. It's not that there are first or second drivers [at Ferrari], it's just how the championship goes for one driver or the other."