The Spaniard finished the season with two race victories, in China and Spain, and seven further visits to the podium to claim the runner-up spot in the drivers’ championship, 155 points behind Sebastian Vettel.
There was speculation over the 32-year-old’s future at Ferrari. He was linked to a possible return to McLaren for 2014 or a switch to Red Bull Racing, to replace Mark Webber. Ecclestone believes he was keen to move, and that his performances suffered because of it.
“I’ve been a little bit disappointed in Fernando because I’m a big supporter of him and of Ferrari,” the 83-year-old wrote in a foreword to the official Formula One season review book.
“I thought he gave up a little bit which is proof that he was looking for another team. I don’t know whether the team is not competitive because of him or because the people who are running the team aren’t getting the job done.”
He added: “He certainly deserves a car that’s capable of winning races. Whether that Ferrari is or not, I don’t know.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic