Following the departure of team principal Stefano Domenicali after a shaky start to the campaign, Marco Mattiacci has taken to the Ferrari hot seat to try to reverse the team’s fortunes.
The company announced the Italian's appointment via Twitter on Monday with the hope that it would be the start of a new revolution at Ferrari:
However, Raikkonen admitted he doesn’t know too much about the new man in charge, as Autosport.com reported.
"I don't know him. We've probably met before. He's got great people around him to help him so I don't see that there will be any issues. I'm sure he'll do everything in his power to push things forward."
Alonso and Raikkonen were both in the top five of last season’s final standings—per Sky Sports—but are yet to record a podium finish between them this time around.
According to the report, Mattiacci was previously the CEO of Ferrari’s North American operations, and he’ll certainly need to use his finely tuned management skills to good effect in his new role.
However, per ESPN, Mattiacci's experience in Formula One is extremely limited, having spent his entire professional career working on the company’s car road sales—no wonder Raikkonen didn’t know who he was.
Raikkonen’s fellow racer Alonso believes that the inexperienced Mattiacci just needs time to adjust as the Ferrari boss, though, as reported by The Guardian:
We need to give him time, to see how he settles. It's obviously too early to say whether he will be very good or very bad. We need to make sure he has the facilities ready, all the technical stuff, that all the team are behind him to ensure he settles as fast as possible, to put him in a place where he feels comfortable.
Next up for Ferrari is the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai, where Alonso and Raikkonen placed first and second in last year’s race.
Per FIA, “Ferrari are the most successful constructors at this race, with four victories (Barrichello ’04, Schumacher ’06, Raikkonen ’07 and Alonso ’13),” giving Raikkonen, Alonso and indeed Ferrari a happy hunting ground at which to start the new era.