Ferrari's team principal Stefano Domenicali has said that the arrival of Kimi Raikkonen won't undermine Fernando Alonso's position within the Italian team next season, as both drivers will have equal opportunities in 2014.
Raikkonen was confirmed as Felipe Massa's replacement on Wednesday, with the Finn putting pen to paper on a two-year deal that will see him returning to Ferrari - the team with which he became World Champion in 2007.
The arrival of the current Lotus driver represents a drastic change in policy for Ferrari, as the Italian team have stuck to a precise in-house strategy which sees a definite number one driver for the last 17 years, since Michael Schumacher arrived at Maranello in 1996.
Raikkonen, however, is an extremely competitive driver and has impressed during his time at Lotus and the news of his arrival had surprised many pundits who wondered whether he'd be able to coexist with Fernando Alonso, who has been Ferrari's undisputed number one driver since replacing Raikkonen in 2010.
Domenicali dismissed fears on an internal feud brewing ahead of 2014.
"It brings to mind football fans who are scared of rival teams because they have so many strong forwards and so they hope they will fight each other for the ball," he told Ferrari's official website.
"For anyone thinking that the choice of Kimi is somehow an anti-Alonso choice, I can put their minds at rest: at Ferrari, everyone knows the interests of the team come first and only then those of the individual.
"Fernando is a key asset for this team and he will be for a long time. I'm sure he is the first to be happy with a choice made to strengthen the group, because he is too intelligent not to realise that a stronger team can only be an advantage."
In 2007, the relationship between Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton, back then both McLaren drivers, became increasingly strained over the course of the season, but Domenicali maintains both Alonso and Raikkonen will have the same opportunities of success in 2014.
"Since the world began, our drivers have always started on equal terms. It's always been that way and always will. Then, during the course of the season, if the situation is such that one driver can help the other based on the points table, it's logical and right that it should happen.
"It's happened in the past and will happen in the future, as all drivers who have driven a Ferrari have demonstrated. It occurred at the time of [Juan Manuel] Fangio and [Peter] Collins and more recently with [Mika] Salo and [Eddie] Irvine, when the Finn gave up on his only chance of a win in Formula 1 to help his team-mate, as Raikkonen was helped by Felipe [Massa], before repaying the compliment and again with Felipe and Fernando.
"As for the Dream Team, I'm not in the habit of dreaming with my eyes open, as it's not in my nature to do so. I would only say that the combination of Fernando and Kimi is the best one could have today in Formula 1, in terms of talent, experience, competitive spirit and the ability to move car development forward."
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