Ferrari have refuted suggestions that Felipe Massa was only handed another season at Ferrari because of the "lack of alternatives."
Last year Massa became the first Ferrari driver since 1992 to complete an entire season without a top-three result and started this campaign off on the same footing.
It wasn't until October's Japanese GP - the 15th round of the Championship - that the Brazilian finally made it onto the podium when he finished the grand prix in second place.
That result boosted Massa into the top ten in the Drivers' standings although he is still 129 points behind his team-mate Fernando Alonso, who is fighting for the World title.
But despite that, last week Ferrari announced that Massa would remain with the Scuderia for another season, once again partnering Alonso.
The announcement, though, did not get a very positive response with F1 fans left wondering if Ferrari had made the right decision.
The team insists they have.
"The decision to extend the agreement with Felipe Massa for another season was carefully weighed up and not just the obvious one," Ferrari said on their website.
"Nor was it inevitable because of the lack of alternatives, nor was it in anyway guided by the wishes of his current team-mate, because Ferrari alone chooses its drivers.
"Many knocked on the doors of Maranello, some were considered, but in the end, a logical conclusion prevailed: there is no one better than Felipe to deliver hic et nunc the speed, talent and capacity to work for the good of the team.
"The Brazilian's career displays these qualities as does the fact that harmony reigns within the team, which is united and shows solidarity even in the most difficult moments.
"Fans of the Reds know the score: some decisions are made solely and exclusively for the good of Ferrari. The rest is all idle chatter."
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