Fisichella will take Massa's ride for Ferrari at Monza
Friday 04 September 2009
Ferrari yesterday confirmed that Giancarlo Fisichella will drive their second car alongside the Belgian Grand Prix winner, Kimi Raikkonen, in next weekend's Italian GP at Monza.
Though Felipe Massa's latest round of neurological tests in Miami have been encouraging, the Brazilian, who was injured during qualifying for the Hungarian GP on 25 July, will probably not return until 2010, and after the test driver Luca Badoer's unimpressive outings at Valencia and Spa the Scuderia desperately need someone faster for their home race. Fisichella fitted the bill after a storming drive to second place last weekend.
Force India, Fisichella's team, said discussions with Ferrari had begun only in the last 24 hours, once Massa's situation became clearer. The team's owner, Vijay Mallya, said: "Giancarlo and his management team approached me yesterday with the Ferrari proposal. For any Italian driver, a Ferrari race seat is a long-held dream and for Giancarlo it was no exception. No one should stand in the way of this. Furthermore, the agreement will secure his long-term future with Ferrari and it would be incorrect to jeopardise this, particularly when he has made such a vital contribution to Force India."
Inevitably, there has been speculation about financial arrangements, as Force India are believed still to owe Ferrari $5.3m (£3.2m) for their 2008 engine supply, but Mallya denied that had been a factor. "We we have not agreed any financial settlement with Ferrari," he said. "This agreement has been made for the good of Giancarlo and the sport in general."
Vitantonio Liuzzi will step into Fisichella's vacated seat alongside Adrian Sutil.
Chelsea vs Manchester United: Jose Mourinho dismisses United injury worries, saying 'they have an amazing squad'
Aaron Hernandez: American Football in the dock as NFL star player's murderous double life is revealed
Chelsea vs Manchester United: Why Blues are the least popular team in the league
Chelsea vs Manchester United combined XI: Thibaut Courtois or David De Gea? Juan Mata or Willian? Who makes our team?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: Where are the tickets for the fight?
- 1 BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
- 2 18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
- 3 US? China? India? The 10 biggest economies in 2030 will be...
- 4 'I wish my teacher knew...': Young students share their 'heartbreaking' worries in notes
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust