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NOVEMBER 1, 1991

Why Ferrari fired Alain Prost...


Claudio Lombardi is team director of Ferrari and, in theory at least, the man who makes decisions in the Ferrari racing team. We asked him why Alain Prost was not racing in Adelaide. This is what he had to say:

Why is Alain Prost not racing?

"Ferrari took this decision to stop with Alain Prost both for the last Grand Prix and for next season. The relationship between a top driver and a top team involves the performance of the driver and then the behaviour of the driver. For the first point we are very happy with the performance of Alain Prost. I personally worked with Alain for the last four months and I think he is really a very good driver and a fantastic test driver. The second point is behaviour. The behaviour of Alain Prost during this season has not been at the level that Ferrari would like from a top driver. His behaviour inside and outside the team meant that Ferrari had to stop the relationship."

Could you give an example of the behaviour which upset Ferrari?

"There are now legal problems between Ferrari and Alain Prost so I cannot really give you examples of such behaviour. Probably you know what I mean."

Why did the split occur before Adelaide and not after the season had ended?

"In the last week the behaviour of Alain Prost was really worse and worse and Ferrari took this decision."

Who took the decision?

"Ferrari took the decision."

Did Gianni Agnelli of Fiat take the decision?

"Ferrari took the decision."

Was the decision related to rumours that Prost had a deal to join Ligier in 1992?

"I cannot answer that question. You must understand that there are legal problems now between us and Alain Prost."

Why was Gianni Morbidelli chosen to replace Alain Prost?

"The choice of Morbidelli shows the emergency. Gianni is now the only driver with experience who is able to drive our car with the automatic gearbox. He is our test driver."

Have you chosen a replacement for Alain Prost for 1992?

"You will know the name of our driver in a short time. A week or two."