Ferrari boss Luca di Montezemolo has suggested the door would be open for Valentino Rossi if he wanted to make a switch to Formula 1 next year.
The Italian MotoGP champion recently tested for the Ferrari team again at the Barcelona circuit, and the Italian squad was impressed with his performance. Rossi had been linked with Ferrari in the past, and rumors have started again following the test.
Di Montezemolo said during the launch of Ferrari's new car that he would welcome Rossi if the possibility arose next year.
"He's a friend and an undisputed champion, from Emilia-Romagna, a great fan of Formula 1 and engines, and also a potential Formula 1 champion," said di Montezemolo. "If there was the possibility in 2011 and he wanted to do it and had the possibility for testing and adapting to F1, then why not?"
The Ferrari head insisted he is in favor of allowing teams to run three cars in the future, a move that would help drivers like Rossi or young stars race in Formula 1.
"I want to be a little more general: I spoke about the possibility of a third car, but I didn't say that Ferrari needs to have three cars," he said. "I'm well aware of the objections coming from the small teams. I was talking from the point of view of the interest of Formula 1 and of potential new entries in Formula 1.
"The third car could also be helpful for young drivers, to let them grow. It's not right that a boy, who has never driven in Formula 1, starts into a race without training and tests. Here's the idea: I would happily give a Ferrari to an American, German or Australian team and let the car be managed by them. They would definitely spend less than if they had to build a car on their own from scratch. They could hand it over to a talented and strong driver or try it with a young driver with a certain potential.
"I told [Stefano] Domenicali to work on the possibility that some teams, like ours, could hand over cars to other teams."