Montezemolo says Alonso will benefit from Raikkonen's return

By on Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Kimi-Raikkonen-Fernando-AlonsoFerrari president Luca di Montezemolo reckons current driver Fernando Alonso will benefit when former driver Kimi Raikkonen returns to the team next season.

Raikkonen raced for Ferrari between 2007 and 2009 but was paid off a year early and joined the World Rally Championship.

Raikkonen returned to Formula 1 at the start of 2012 with Lotus and last week Ferrari confirmed that the Finn will race for them in 2014 and 2015.

Di Montezemolo sees parallels between the return of Raikkonen with that of Niki Lauda. The Austrian retired from the sport in 1979 as a double champion but came back to Formula 1 with McLaren and claimed a third title in 1984.

"Raikkonen is a case almost identical to that of Lauda, Niki also said 'enough' at one point because he was sick with Formula One," Montezemolo told Gazzetta dello Sport.

"I spoke of the twin brother of Kimi [about 2009] because the driver we had was not the same one we had hired [for 2007]. The break has been good, he has returned to the top, won, and finished many races. I want a driver who will not make me regret losing [Felipe] Massa, and here he is. I want wins, consistent performances and podiums."

The Ferrari president also believes that Raikkonen's presence in the team will assist Alonso.

"Alonso will be the first to benefit and I'm happy he [Raikkonen] is back among us; the Ferrari employees have welcomed the news because he left good memories. Returning to Lauda, when he returned with renewed energy he beat Prost to the title. "

"We are not so masochistic as to hire a driver without informing Alonso. Fernando has always been aware of the choice of Raikkonen and also that the alternative of a young man gave us no certainties in the world championship. Raikkonen today is one of the strongest drivers in the sport, with Alonso, [Sebastian] Vettel and [Lewis] Hamilton. Alonso was the first to be happy with his arrival."

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