Ferrari Team Principal Stefano Domenicali has suggested Ferrari will honour their promise of Luca Badoer racing at the Belgian Grand Prix, despite finishing in 17th and a lap down in today’s European Grand Prix.
“First of all it was important for him to finish,” Domenicali told the BBC. “It was difficult you know… We need to stay cool and calm and we know that it was important for Luca to finish. I respect that. I’m sure that we have seen a Luca that has not really shown up, but he has real potential. Apart from the fact he was racing for the first time in a long time, also from a psychological point of view the pressure on him was very high, even if we didn’t create it.”
“We will speak together. I think we will discuss it tonight but I think it is important to keep up Luca because he is a real team player and this is important in Ferrari.” he added
When asked whether Badoer would retain his seat for Spa-Francorchamps, Domenicali simply replied “Yes, I think so.”
Badoer seemed upbeat despite the ultimately poor performance, in which he spun twice and received a drive-through penalty for crossing the pit-exit line.
“I’m very happy because we have arrived at a point that we fixed when we decided I would take Felipe’s place,” he said afterwards. “So this is the first step. I drove, drove, drove, drove, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. I did actually a big start and at the third corner I was 14th, and then a Renault kicked my ass.”
The said Renault was debutant Romain Grosjean, who was also involved in the pit-lane incident which resulted in Badoer’s drive-through penalty.
Badoer’s fastest lap, 1m40.590s, was the 18th fastest, ahead of Toro Rosso drivers Jaime Alguersuari and Sebastien Buemi, and 1.907s behind fastest man Timo Glock.