Alonso: no rift with Massa

Fernando Alonso has played down the widely-held view that Ferrari might have trouble juggling the needs of its two Latin drivers this year.

Alonso insists that he gets on well with Felipe Massa, and that they have much in common.

“Felipe is a great team-mate,” said the double World Champion (on right, with Ferrari tester Giancarlo Fisichella and Massa). “First of all, because he’s a Latin character like me, and he’s speaking Italian with me, the communication is fluid. Also Felipe has been in Ferrari for four or five years, and this is important for me. When you arrive to a new team it’s important that your team-mate is not also new, because you can be a bit lost with the technical people etc. With the experience he has, he can help me.”

Alonso says he is relishing his new role: “To be honest I’ve been answering questions about Ferrari and Alonso for three or four years, and now finally I’m here. In 2010 everybody is expecting a lot from us. We’re ready for the challenge. We know that we are one of the favourites. We respect everybody, but we will do our best.”