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Ferrari hits out at media

NEWS STORY
19/04/2010

Ferrari has hit out at sections of the media following reports of 'bad blood' between its two drivers after Fernando Alonso overtook Felipe Massa as the Brazilian entered the pitlane at the end of Lap 19.

Frustrated by a drive-through penalty for jumping the start, Alonso overtook his teammate as the two entered the pitlane forcing the Brazilian wide and on to the grass.

"We only saw it (the incident) afterwards on the television replay," said team boss, Stefano Domenicali, "and I think it was just a racing incident. There is absolutely no problem between the two drivers: when you are always racing to win, you can have moments like this.

"If he was not my team-mate, there wouldn't be so much talk about it," added Alonso, "for me it was a normal move and it definitely won't compromise our relationship."

"He managed to get inside me, passing me going into the pit lane," said Massa. "I lost some places because of it, as I had to wait for his stop to be finished."

Despite the Italian team's assurances that all is well, sections of the media - no doubt recalling how the situation deteriorated at McLaren when the Spaniard was teamed with Leis Hamilton - felt otherwise, suggesting "internal fighting" and "unhappiness".

Tonight, Ferrari was keen to stamp out the speculation before it gets out of control, especially in the long wait before the next round of the championship in three weeks.

"Some news outlets used some statements by Felipe Massa after the Chinese GP, which were taken out of context," said the team. "Obviously someone is trying to create bad blood between the two drivers after Fernando's overtaking manoeuvre of his teammate at the pit lane entrance on lap 19.

"Both drivers were very clear after the race: this episode won't change anything at all regarding the relationship between the two. Felipe and Fernando are travelling back to Europe on the same flight, together with the Scuderia's technicians.

"A spokesperson for Maranello outfit, on the phone from Shanghai, said: "What happened yesterday with Fernando overtaking Felipe was just an episode in a race and I should be treated as such. Our drivers know how to behave on the track and they have shown it also this time. Naturally both want to win and they both bring fighting spirit to the races, while respecting a very simple rule: the team's well-being is of more importance than the individual's well-being."

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