Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali has revealed that he considered quitting his position at the end of last year in the immediate aftermath of the strategy mistake in Abu Dhabi that cost Fernando Alonso the world title.
Alonso had looked on course to deliver the championship in Abu Dhabi but Ferrari made an error in trying to cover Mark Webber's early stop for tires – with the Australian having appeared to be the main threat for the title at that point. But Alonso's early stop dropped him behind a number of other cars and he failed to make enough progress up the field - meaning that race victor Sebastian Vettel overcame the odds to grab the crown. That tactical error resulted in Ferrari being on the receiving end of intense criticism – and Domenicali has confessed that he contemplated resigning over the matter immediately after the race.
In an interview with Italy's La Repubblica, Domenicali admitted the days after Abu Dhabi were tough - but says thinking things through in the cold light of day had made him realize that continuing was the best way forward.
"After Abu Dhabi, I personally raised the issue," said Domenicali, who claimed he did not sleep for two days after the race. "I wondered if it was right or not that I stayed.
"I think pondering that [whether it was right or wrong to stay] was something I had to do, the responsible thing. I am not attached to the chair. But I came to the conclusion that resigning would be a mistake.
"I know the team and I think I'm the right person to capitalize on all that we have sown in recent months. From the methodological point of view, in Maranello we have changed almost everything and I am sure we will soon see the results of hard work."
Domenicali believes too much was made of the Abu Dhabi mistake and that if the error had been made in anything other than a title showdown it would not have been such a big issue.
"The mistake was, in terms of magnitude, huge – and it produced devastating effects. But in a normal race it would have been a normal error. So you must not jettison everything, even the good things, because of that mistake. We will change things and officially announce things in the coming days – and we will make sure that those who make delicate decisions are able to have all the tools they need not to be wrong again."
He added: "I will personally try to help the team from a psychological point of view as well, because the hardest penalty in a shootout is the one coming after you missed one."