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Montezemolo had no time to consider anyone but Mattiacci

ESPN Staff
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Luca di Montezemolo says Marco Mattiacci was the only man considered for the team principal role at Ferrari once Stefano Domenicali decided to stand down.

Domenicali left the team last month and was immediately replaced by Mattiacci, who had previously headed up Ferrari's road car division in North America. Mattiacci has limited experience in Formula One, but comes with a good working knowledge of the Ferrari/FIAT empire.

Montezemolo said the decision to employ Mattiacci was his and that it had been made on the spur of the moment.

"Immediately I looked inside the company, because inside the company we had very good potential people, and Marco Mattiacci, for his characteristics and what he's done in the past in Tokyo and China and America, he has the capability to manage people," Montezemolo said. "There were no other alternatives because, first of all, I made the decision and also I did not have time to think of somebody else and I didn't want to leave an open position. In 99% of the time I am happy to let people grow up in the company."

Montezemolo compared Mattiacci's arrival with Jean Todt joining in 1992, and said he would work closely with the new team principal to guide him through the complicated world of Formula One.

"I'm doing exactly what I did in 1992 when I hired Jean Todt as a team manager. For three, four or five months I was very close to him, because he was an expert of rally and endurance races but completely unexpertised in Formula One. I am trying to do the same with [Mattiacci]."

Montezemolo ruled out the prospect of ex-Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn returning to the team now that he has left Mercedes. Brawn met with Montezemolo in Maranello last week, but the Ferrari president insists it was nothing more than a friendly visit.

"In the last five days I read that we were going to hire one guy that resigned from Mercedes, I don't even know his name, then [we were going to sign] Ross because he came to see me last week, but we had spoken before because he has a house in Forte dei Marmi and I said 'come to see me with the wife and the friends'. He drove LaFerrari, we spoke a lot, so all of a sudden Ross was going back to Ferrari."

Montezemolo said he had been surprised by how bad Ferrari's start to the season had been.

"Also it has to be clear that I'm not happy with where Ferrari is, not at all. I did not expect a team so less competitive of my expectations at the beginning of the season. We have to understand and be clear of what are the problems, why we are not competitive and to improve the situation as soon as possible without losing our calm. We have to have it clearly laid out in front of us what the short-term goals, medium-term goals and our long-term goals. This is what is important to first understand and then react."

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