Marchionne takes dig at Alonso in Vettel praise

© XPB 

Ferrari chairman Sergio Marchionne praises Sebatian Vettel’s first campaign with Maranello, saying the German has shown more team spirit in one season than Fernando Alonso in five.

Vettel joined the Scuderia last winter, replacing the Spaniard who had grown frustrated at not being able to secure a third world title and returned to McLaren despite holding a Ferrari contract until 2016.

Vettel’s integration within the Italian squad proved to be seamless affair, with the four-time world champion bouncing back from a so-so 2014 performance to win three races and claim another 10 podium finishes.

Besides his strong on-track results, Marchionne is also pleased with how quickly the 28-year-old has become a member of the Maranello family off it. To stress his point, the Ferrari president recounts the story of Vettel addressing the entire ‘Gestione Sportiva’ for the team’s annual Christmas dinner.

“There were over 1,200 people and Seb gave a speech entirely in Italian,” Marchionne is quoted as saying by Autosprint. “He had probably learned it by heart but he spoke in near-perfect Italian. He was like an elementary school pupil reciting a poem for Christmas.

“Over the season, Vettel has left the impression of embracing more and more the Ferrari spirit. Alonso stayed here for five years but I think he was less of a ‘Ferrarista’ when he left than Vettel who has just arrived.”

Ferrari could quit over F1 power unit regulations

Ferrari boss slams Red Bull’s ‘offensive’ attitude

Use the red tabs on either side of the screen to scroll through more Formula One news and features

Click here for a gallery of the McLaren MP4-X

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter