Ferrari expects 'fiercer' fight in 2011

Ferrari is expecting an even more 'fierce' battle for title glory in 2011, having played a central role in the thrilling fight for last year's world championship

Ferrari expects 'fiercer' fight in 2011

That is the claim of team principal Stefano Domenicali, who reckons things will be much closer at the front of the field this year - especially with McLaren and Mercedes GP expected to make progress on their 2010 form.

"2010 was a fierce season and 2011 will be even more so," Domenicali said in an interview with La Repubblica.

"Because besides Red Bull, which has won and will therefore start as favourite, McLaren will be back strong as it's always been up front and [Lewis] Hamilton is an exceptional driver. I also expect Mercedes to be up there: it has invested too much to afford another season like the last one."

When asked what he believed the key to 2011 would be, Domenicali said: "On the track we'll have to get used to a bit of a revolution: who starts on pole won't automatically have a straightforward path to victory anymore. Strategies will be important.

"But more generally it will be important to work on the group. The real problem in today's F1 is that there aren't landmark technical people anymore. There's only a single one-man-show remaining: Adrian Newey.

"As for the rest, at every level, there are teams with excellent number twos and number threes coordinated by excellent people. So I think the real challenge is to form people and groups: only this way you can win; only this way a new era will begin."

Domenicali also said he has complete confidence that Felipe Massa can bounce back from his difficult 2010 campaign.

When asked about the Brazilian's troubles from last season, Domenicali said: "That's partly a characteristic of where he comes from. In part, on the other hand, is the result of a bigger problem.

"Every driver, in order to race, must feel the strongest. When they don't manage to be the strongest, it's very hard to clear their heads from those excuses each of us creates when things go bad.

"I think this was the cause of Felipe's bad season, but he'll come out of it if he works on that. That's why I'm certain we'll see a great Massa in 2011. The driver knows full well that he can't afford another season like this."

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