Ferrari president: Failure to win title in 10 years would be 'a tragedy'

By Andrew BensonChief F1 writer
Jean Todt and Kimi Raikkonen celebrate winning the 2007 World Championship
Ferrari last won the drivers' title in 2007 with Kimi Raikkonen

Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne has increased the pressure on his team to win the championship within two years.

Ferrari last won the drivers' title in 2007 with Kimi Raikkonen. Their last constructors' title was in 2008.

Marchionne said: "If we were to somehow fail to win a title over a 10-year span, it would be a tragedy."

He also hinted at a potential Formula 1 entry by Alfa Romeo and criticised Red Bull's behaviour towards engine partners.

The remarks came in an interview with Italy's Gazzetta Dello Sport newspaper.

The 63-year-old said Ferrari's improved performance in 2015, when Sebastian Vettel won three races following a winless season in 2014, had "helped bring back credibility to the brand".

Alfa Romeo Return?

Eddie Cheever drives the #23 Benetton Team Alfa Romeo 184TB Turbo followed by Thierry Boutsen and Alfa Romeo team mate Riccardo Patrese during the Shell Oils Grand Prix of Europe on 6 October 1985
Alfa Romeo pulled out of Formula One as a constructor following the final race of the 1985 season in Australia.

Marchionne is chief executive officer of the Fiat Group, which has both Ferrari and Alfa Romeo under its umbrella.

Alfa Romeo, which won the very first F1 world championship in 1950, last raced in F1 in the 1980s but Marchionne said he believed it could be time for the brand to return.

"In order to restore their name they must consider returning to Formula 1," he said.

"They would probably work with Ferrari."

He added: "Alfa Romeo are capable of making their own chassis, just like they are capable of making their own engine."

Red Bull Criticism

Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Red Bull Racing sits in his car in the garage during day one of wet weather tyre testing at Circuit Paul Ricard on January 25, 2016 in Le Castellet, France.
After failing to find a new engine supplier, Red Bull have negotiated a new Renault deal, named after the luxury watch brand TAG Heuer

Ferrari last year held talks with Red Bull about supplying the former world champions with an engine for 2016 but these foundered when Ferrari said they could only supply a 2015 power-unit.

Red Bull were looking for a new partner following the collapse of their relationship with Renault, following the team's heavy criticisms of the French company.

Red Bull also failed to secure an engine supply from F1's other manufacturers, Mercedes and Honda, and have ended up continuing with Renault, although the engine will be branded a Tag Heuer.

Marchionne said: "People criticise me for not giving them an engine. I agree with people that say that Red Bull were too tough on their engine suppliers, but in the end this sport must continue.

"The important things is to have other large manufacturers enter the sport."