Montoya says Schumacher prevented Ferrari move

Juan Montoya

Juan Pablo Montoya believes he was never in contention for a drive at Ferrari because Michael Schumacher did not want him at the team.

The seven-time grand prix winner was seen as one of Schumacher’s closest rivals in the sport during the 2000s, and it has long been known that the pair did not see eye to eye. Montoya was linked with a switch to Ferrari during his time in F1, but the move never appeared realistic due to the clash of personalities.

Montoya was back in the F1 paddock last weekend at Monza, visiting the circuit he recorded his first grand prix win at in 2001.

And when asked by Italian publication Autosprint if he could have joined the Scuderia during his F1 career, the Colombian gave a typically frank response.

"It was never possible," Montoya said. "Michael Schumacher was there and he hated me."

However, he was quick to wish the German well following the skiing accident that left him hospitalised for more than nine months.

"I'm really sorry about how he is now," said Montoya. "I just hope he continues to recover."

38-year-old Montoya returned to single-seater racing this season after several years in NASCAR with a successful campaign in IndyCar. The Colombian took a race win and three further podiums to end the year a strong fourth in the standings.