Alonso: Massa deserves credit

Thursday 20-September-2012 18:49

Fernando Alonso has backed his team-mate Felipe Massa, saying one shouldn't belittle what he has achieved in F1.

The 2008 runner-up, who has not featured on the podium since the 2010 Korean GP, is under fire with reports claiming his days at Ferrari are numbered.

Sergio Perez, Heikki Kovalainen and Nico Hulkenberg are just the latest to be linked to Massa's Ferrari race-seat.

However, his double World Champion team-mate Alonso says one should not write off all that Massa has achieved in F1.

"Anyone who comes to drive here must be a driver that respects Ferrari and the tradition of this team and the fact that here, we work for the team, for the red cars as our first priority," Alonso told the Scuderia's website.

"I have been working with Felipe for three years now and we have a very good relationship and if the team decides to appoint someone different for next year, then that driver has to be better than Felipe.

"Looking at all the names that you the media have been putting forward as a replacement, I'm not sure if you realise quite how much Felipe has achieved in Formula 1, compared to the names mentioned."

The 31-year-old also shared his thoughts on his good friend Robert Kubica, who returned to competition earlier this month with a victory in an Italian rally.

"I have known Robert since he was 12 years old and he is a nice guy and a very talented driver.

"It was good that he has been able to drive in a rally, but if he wants to be back in Formula 1, he can't just leave hospital and start.

"You need practice and you need to "wake-up" your driving skills and start a training routine physically and also mentally, as you need to become again a professional driver in your head. Driving in that rally was part of this process."

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