Ferrari revved up for F1 title fight
updated 10:45 AM EST, Fri March 8, 2013
Stefano Domenicali wants Ferrari to challenge for a first drivers' title since 2007.
- Stefano Domenicali convinced Ferrari can challenge for F1 world title
- Ferrari's Fernando Alonso missed out to Sebastian Vettel in last race of 2012
- The Italian team has not won a drivers' championship since 2007
- The 2013 Formula One season begins with March 17 Australian Grand Prix
(CNN) -- Stefano Domenicali insists his Ferrari team is ready for a tilt at the 2013 Formula One world championship, with the Italian team principal setting his sights on the podium at next week's curtain raiser in Australia.
Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso, a two-time world champion, was beaten to the 2012 championship by Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel at the final race of the season having seen his challenge hampered by a stuttering start to the campaign.
Alonso and his teammate Felipe Massa struggled to match the speed of their rivals in the early races of last season, something Domenicali insists will not be a problem this time around.
Read: Kubica returns to motorsport
India's F1 story
F1's spiritual home in the U.S.
Stirling Moss: A history of Silverstone
"Unless someone else has done an exceptional job I'm convinced that Ferrari will be in the battle to the end," Domenicali told the sport's official website.
"I expect that the teams who finished in the top positions in Sao Paulo (last season's final race) will repeat that in Melbourne, probably with a reduced advantage -- that's what we are all hoping for anyway.
"A podium in Australia would be a good base on which to build the kind of successes we need."
Spanish driver Alonso was heralded for keeping pace with Vettel, who claimed his third consecutive drivers' crown, despite having a car many observers thought was too slow to compete.
Read: First lady of F1 takes control
After encouraging preseason tests, Domenicali is confident Alonso can deliver a first drivers' title since 2007 for the sport's most successful manufacturer.
"What are the factors that have convinced me that Ferrari has made a step forward?" continued Domenicali.
"The new business structure, the working methods, the modifications to the equipment that we have used to work on this car, the consistency of the results compared with our targets and what we saw in the recent tests.
"These all seem to tell us that we are on the right path at last compared to the past."
Ferrari will be entering its 63rd season in F1 this year, the only team to have competed continuously since the modern championship was introduced in 1950.
Part of complete coverage on
Track the new Formula One season as it progresses, circuit by circuit, race by race.
updated 9:24 AM EDT, Thu March 14, 2013
Can the new F1 season live up to last year's standards? Find out the need-to-know stories for 2013.
updated 7:48 AM EDT, Thu March 14, 2013
CNN looks ahead to the Australian Grand Prix, the first F1 race of the 2013 season.
updated 1:24 PM EST, Thu February 28, 2013
Adrian Sutil will be Force India's second driver for the 2013 Formula One season, pledging to make the most of his "second chance".
updated 8:52 PM EST, Fri March 1, 2013
Christmas Abbott, 5'3 and 115 pounds, is the first woman to join a NASCAR pit crew team.
updated 7:35 PM EST, Mon February 11, 2013
The first race in Melbourne is just around the corner and Formula 1 teams are gearing up for a season which promises to be as technical as it is tactical.
updated 7:19 AM EST, Fri March 1, 2013
When the new Formula 1 season gets underway in March, for the first time there will be a woman running a team's entire operations from track to boardroom.
updated 7:22 AM EST, Mon January 21, 2013
The Dakar Rally is one of the world's most dangerous motorsport races, and this year's edition has already been marred by tragic deaths.
updated 2:20 PM EST, Thu January 31, 2013
The famous circuit of Nurburgring is confirmed Thursday as the venue for the 2013 German Grand Prix after reaching a deal with F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone.
updated 10:36 AM EST, Tue November 27, 2012
It did not take very long for the inevitable question to be asked -- just how good a driver is Sebastian Vettel?
updated 9:49 AM EST, Thu January 24, 2013
Changes to tires will make Formula 1 racing faster with more overtaking in 2013, according to the sport's official tire supplier Pirelli.
updated 4:35 AM EST, Mon November 26, 2012
Michael Schumacher, Alain Prost, and contemporary pacesetters Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso were all contenders.
updated 8:32 AM EST, Fri November 23, 2012
Who is the greatest F1 driver of all time? Past and present drivers give their verdict on the contenders to CNN.
CNN has asked Formula One stars past and present, "Who is the best driver of all time?" Now we want to hear from you.
updated 4:48 AM EST, Tue November 20, 2012
A triumphant Lewis Hamilton called Sunday's United States Grand Prix the best race of 2012 but for many it was more important than that -- it was Formula One being reborn in the USA.
CNN's Ben Wyatt says Sebastian Vettel or Fernando Alonso will seal their place in F1 history in Brazil this weekend.
updated 2:41 PM EST, Sun November 25, 2012
The F1 title race will be fought over 20 races this season. Keep track of the latest standings in the drivers' and manufacturers' championships.
updated 10:20 AM EST, Fri November 16, 2012
Mario Andretti says the key to rekindling F1 in the U.S. is a buzzword that has been flying around Washington faster than a Ferrari -- stability.