Background: How Ferrari said goodbye to a number of world champions

17-05-2020 16:10
F1 News
Background: How Ferrari said goodbye to a number of world champions

Sebastian Vettel will be driving his last season in the red of Ferrari in 2020. However, this is not the first time that has to say goodbye to an old world champion in an unpleasant way.


Already in 1964, a special story surfaced. John Surtees was fired on the eve of the 24 hours of Le Mans. Ferrari suspected that Surtees passed on secrets to Lola or kept them for himself to make the jump to F1 with his own team.


A little over a decade later, in 1975, Niki Lauda brought the world title back to Ferrari in Maranello. Lauda felt betrayed after the fire at the Nürburgring, because Ferrari seemed skeptical about his recovery. Lauda moved from Ferrari to Brabham in 1978, which at that time was driving with Alfa Romeo engines in F1. For Ferrari, that separation was seen as betrayal.


Alain Prost didn't want to continue with Ferrari after 1991. He called that year's Ferrari a truck, while he meant the car was harder to drive than a truck. However, this was the last straw and Prost had to leave.


The last time a Ferrari driver left in an annoying way was Fernando Alonso. The Spaniard almost won the world championship with the Scuderia twice in 2010 and 2012 but was narrowly beaten by rival Sebatian Vettel both times. Alonso also didn't like the change at the top and to make matters worse, Ferrari built one of the worst Ferrari's of the last 20 years in 2014. Alonso left for a second adventure at McLaren and said: "I don't want to stay in a team that, if it continues like this, can only aspire to second place."

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