Mario Andretti asks Ferrari to bring back Luca di Montezemolo to save the team from misery
Ferrari have not won a race in over a year and are only fourth in the standings currently.
Mario Andretti (Left, Credits: Henry Ford Museum) and Charles Leclerc, Carlos Sainz celebrating their Bahrain 1-2, 2022 (Right, credits: Outlook India)
Italian powerhouse Ferrari has been struggling to recapture its former championship-winning prowess. Since their last triumph in 2007, the Prancing Horse has faced disappointment year after year. Even their recent challenge in 2022 fizzled out before the season’s end, leaving fans yearning for a revival. The 1978 champion, Mario Andretti, proposed a surprising solution for Ferrari’s revival.
The 2023 season has seen Ferrari languishing in fourth place, a far cry from their last season’s prowess. The team has managed to bag only three podiums in 12 races so far and a pole position, all by the hands of Charles Leclerc. However, the reliability woes, strategic mishaps, and driver errors have carried on this season as well.
Andretti proposes bringing back the legendary Luca di Montezemolo to revive Ferrari from all their misery. Speaking to Planet F1, the American champion asserted that, “Ferrari need to bring Montezemolo back.” He recognizes that the Maranello squad has not won a single title since his stepping down and believes they will be back if the former president returns, saying, “That’s my take on it. That’s my opinion.”
Montezemolo played a pivotal role in Ferrari’s history, spearheading their revival in the 1990s with Jean Todt, securing consecutive titles from 2000 to 2004. After Montezemolo’s departure in 2014, Sergio Maruchio took the reins until his unfortunate passing. Subsequently, John Elkann assumed the mantle of Ferrari’s presidency.
Mario Andretti highlights that the problem is with Ferrari and not with the drivers
Andretti’s empathy extends to the current Ferrari drivers, particularly Charles Leclerc. He observes Leclerc’s frustration, a sentiment shared by many observers. “He’s frustrated with what’s going on there at Ferrari,” Andretti commented. “It’s hard to put your finger on that because it seems like something, even strategically, they’re not making all the best decisions.” Andretti hints at a disconnect between the drivers’ desires and the team’s strategic choices.
The 1978 champion’s disappointment lies with the team’s management, not the drivers. Andretti emphasizes that “It’s not the drivers, and I’ll tell you that.” Andretti believes that the Scuderia has not facilitated their drivers with a championship-worthy car and are far from a “winning situation at the moment.” His faith in the skills of Leclerc and Carlos Sainz remains unwavering, even in the face of current challenges.
When considering Leclerc’s potential options, Andretti delves into the dynamics of the F1 landscape. He questions the viability of a move to a team like Red Bull, where Max Verstappen’s dominance could cast a shadow. With rumours swirling around about the Monegasque is up for a renewal of his contract, the American acknowledges that Leclerc will look at everything that is on his hands before making his decision.
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