'Replace Kimi with Giovinazzi!', says ex-Scuderia boss

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Antonio Giovinazzi's performance last weekend in Melbourne did not go unnoticed, with many pundits admitting to have been highly impressed with the young charger's talent and the result he achieved.

The 23-year-old Ferrari reserve driver got an early wake-up call from team boss Maurizio Arrivabene on Saturday morning, urging him to jump out of bed, gather his stuff and head over to Sauber to replace an unfit Pascal Wehrlein.

One man who obviously appreciated Giovinazzi's flawless race on Sunday is former Scuderia boss Cesare Fiorio, who believes he is the obvious candidate to replace Kimi Raikkonen for 2018.

"I have followed him for 4-5 years and he is definitely the best talent we (Italy) have and is ready for Formula 1," said Fiorio.

"Ferrari did well to put him under contract and I hope they will give him a chance."

Fiorio believes Raikkonen is now past his time, and new blood should be introduced to the Scuderia.

"His (Raikkonen's) last season with Alonso and the first with Vettel were embarrassing, although he recovered last year with Vettel," Fiorio added.

"But by the end of the season, he starts to be a driver at 38, 39 years old and then I think it's time to conclude his adventure at Ferrari."

The former racing boss also hailed Sebastian Vettel's long-awaited win with Ferrari in the opening race of the 2017 season.

"Last year was the result of anxiety -- he did a very bad season. So it was important for Vettel to let everyone know he is a four time world champion.

"And Ferrari also had to show Mercedes that this year they will put them in great difficulty.

"It was said that without British engineering you cannot go anywhere, but instead (Sergio) Marchionne's team of young engineers was the winning choice.

"Now comes the hard part," added Fiorio, who ran Ferrari at the end of the 90s.

"With the new rules, they must add a tenth at each Grand prix, so two seconds by the end of the season.

"If Ferrari can do this they will remain competitive, if not they will stay where they were before. It will take a great effort in the area of aerodynamics," he said.

GALLERY: all the pics from Sunday's action

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