Alonso will leave the Scuderia, Sebastian Vettel will take his place in 2015.
The storm had been in the forecast for a long time but nobody was confident enough to predict its path. No, we are not referring to Phanfone, the meteorological phenomenon which has put this week end's race in some doubt but of Fernando Alonso's divorce from Ferrari.
As much as anything can be definite in F1, you can consider this a done deal. Ferrari cannot guarantee Alonso a dominant car for next year and Alonso has no incentive to spend the next couple of seasons developing a car he will ha likely have to hand over to a younger driver. At 33, he does not want to risk the same treatment Schumacher got at the end of 2006.
Gazzetta dello Sport today.
Simply put, Allievi would not have written that piece if he was not solid on it.
OMG, he's not Joe Saward, can we trust him you say? Yes, he knew Montezemolo was leaving before everyone else and he was the one who broke the Alonso phone tap scandal in the Mclaren spy gate days. It's happening.
The other bombshell in the article is Vettel in Fernando's seat right from 2015.
This was also the rumor of the last few months and an accepted career path for the German for the last few years. What's different is that it was not supposed to happen for one more season.
If that what was to be inevitable then perhaps everyone realized the change might as well happen sooner rather then later.
James Allen points out how Bernie's hand might play a role as it did in getting both Schumacher and Hamilton at Mercedes. One could argue to that there was an effort made by F1 to make sure Mercedes was happy and in the best possible position to win and stay in the sport. The new bosses at Ferrari are bit of an unknown for F1, they showed they are willing to make drastic changes. It is not unthinkable an effort would be made to set the Scuderia on a path to success as quickly as possible.
Vettel's incentives are the challenge of winning with a different team and making sure the new car is developed in a way that suits his tastes.
Alonso has two paths: Mclaren and Red Bull. Allievi. in the article. mentions Ferrari had also targeted Hamilton but in the end preferred Vettel.
Hamilton's only reason for leaving Mercedes would have been if he were to have a major hissy fit after losing the championship to Rosberg anyway.
Red Bull, you might think, has no need for Alonso with Ricciardo driving very well and Kvyat in the wings. But careful. that driver combo, while fast would leave RBR without the prestige of a world champion and top driver behind the wheel unlike all major competitors. That's not something to be underestimated. For similar reasons, Ferrari would not be happy with a Raikkonen-Bianchi lineup, even if temporary.
Mclaren Honda is the other path but can anyone imagine Alonso and Ron Dennis in the same room? Mclaren seems like a chilly place to begin with, that would make it positively arctic. On the plus side, Fernando would have plenty extra cash to keep his Dasha in Chanel.
Presumably, at some point, Ferrari would lose Banco Santander's sponsorship and a major opportunity will open up for branding. Finding out who'll pony up to put their stickers on certainly the most prestigious side pods in F1 will be interesting and a measure of F1's health.
It's all not confirmed of course and not likely to be until after the big FIAT-Chrysler's Wall Street debut on October 13. Sergio Marchionne will officially step in for Luca di Montezemolo at the helm of Ferrari and it will be a whole new chapter for the Scuderia.