Alonso needed new team, says Massa

Fernando Alonso Felipe Massa

Fernando Alonso needed new Formula 1 team, reckons former team-mate Felipe Massa.

Fernando Alonso needed a change of scene in Formula 1 as neither he nor Ferrari were getting the best out of each other, reckons former team-mate Felipe Massa.

Williams racer Massa drove alongside Alonso at Ferrari for four years from 2010, before dropped in favour of Kimi Raikkonen at the end of 2013.

Alonso followed Massa to the Ferrari exit this year after reaching a mutual agreement with the team to end his contract early and move to McLaren. Sebastian Vettel will take Alonso's place.

AUTOSPORT revealed in early October that Alonso and Ferrari had agreed to split, and Massa said it was clear long before the official announcements in late November that the relationship had run its course.

"Everybody knew he was going to leave Ferrari, so it wasn't exactly breaking news," Massa told AUTOSPORT.

"Maybe we saw that Ferrari didn't give him the best car that he expected, but maybe also he didn't help Ferrari to grow.

"So maybe now is the time for him to change."

Massa suspects that Ferrari will miss Alonso, though he still wishes his long-time employer success.

"If it is going to be any worse or better for Ferrari, I don't know," added the Brazilian.

"Fernando is perhaps the best driver on the grid, so we don't know if it will be enough for Ferrari to make the step forward [without him].

"We need to wait and see. But I just hope for the best for Ferrari, anyway."

Williams's technical chief Pat Symonds agreed with Massa's verdict, having worked with Alonso during his title-winning years at Renault.

"He obviously wasn't happy at Ferrari and if you're not happy then it's best to move on," said Symonds.

"He does seem to have been in the wrong place at the wrong time [since he left Renault], which is a shame.

"The guy is incredibly quick."

BOTTAS COMPARISON

Massa said his new partnership with Valtteri Bottas at Williams had advantages over working with Alonso as their driving styles are more compatible.

"He was good for me, but what was good for him as well is that our driving style is not so different," Massa said of Bottas.

"So many races we had a very similar set-up and if something was working for me, then he could see, and it was the same the other way around."

He said by comparison Alonso's style was 'very different'.

"Fernando is very aggressive with the front of the car, so he uses more of the front tyre than maybe anybody in Formula 1.

"But by being so aggressive, he sometimes helps the rear, which is good at certain tracks.

"[Bottas] has a completely different driving style to Fernando."

autosport.com

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