Felipe Massa: “I plan to get back all the possible points I have lost” 

Written by David on March 26th, 2008 at 12:09 pmLast Update: March 26th, 2008 at 12:09 pm

Massa Alonso arguing Nurburgring“On Sunday night, I left Sepang’s Circuit at the end of a weekend that had not lived up to the result that I could have expected given how it had gone up until the middle of the race. With my wife, I flew back home to Brazil and I’m staying here until the weekend, when I head off for Bahrain to get acclimatized to the time difference and the weather.”

“Some people seemed to be surprised at what they saw as a return to form for Ferrari in Malaysia, but the reality is that, in Australia, it had all evolved in a bad way for us and we never had a chance in that race to show what we could do and our competitors were for sure, a bit stronger than us there and operated more effectively than us over the course of the first race weekend of the season.”

“In Malaysia, starting from the front row of the grid, we had the possibility to show what we could do. But while last weekend proved that we had not suddenly lost the good form we had demonstrated through winter testing, it was not a the sort of start to the season that I wanted for myself, what with having a mechanical problem in Melbourne in the first race and then going off the track in Sepang and not finishing the second race. It was very frustrating, but as the saying goes, that’s racing. We saw that everyone can have a good day or a bad day and I have started this season with things not going my way. But there are still sixteen races and a hundred and sixty points up for grabs. In the next few races I plan to get back all the possible points I have lost in the two opening rounds of this season.”

Felipe Massa

“While we have all had since the end of last season to get used to driving without electronic aids, as you will have seen in the two races so far, it does seem to have provoked more incidents, spins and off-track excursions. It has made life harder than before. Being all the time on the limit at a consistent pace and staying on the racing line makes life more tricky, but I don’t think that was the reason I went off the track last Sunday. I had a mechanical problem in the first race in Australia and then in Malaysia I had different problems not linked to the traction control. The cars definitely have a different feel to them, but I feel comfortable driving without the electronics and have no problem with it. The only real problem will come in conditions when you have less grip, but not in situations like we have experienced so far.”

“There has been plenty of talk about the new qualifying format and whether or not we need to introduce a means to stop cars slowing too much to save fuel in Q3 on the lap after their quick one and certainly I think we need to discuss the situation. Personally, I don’t find the new sporting regulations concerning qualifying in Q3 do much to make it more interesting. At least in the old one you got to do a low fuel run but now it’s a bit boring running with the fuel you will use to start the race. Q1 and Q2 are so long and then you have to wait in the garage and having a very heavy car to drive in Q3 is not really much fun, even if I put in a fantastic qualifying lap in Q3 in Malaysia to take pole position. In the past, it was a bit more fun from the driving point of view. Maybe we need a rule change because of this problem of cars going slowly on their in lap, but let’s wait and see what suggestions people come up with.”

2008 Malaysian GP start

“One of the talking points of the season so far has been what people are calling the “post-Todt era” at Ferrari. But to be honest, everything feels pretty much the same. Even if Jean’s areas of responsibility within our organisation have changed, the team itself is still the same with the same targets as we had in the past. The mentality is the same and it is doing a good job. When you replace some people in the team with others who work in the same way, then it changes little. We have seen in the past when Ross Brawn left, people said it was going to be different, but we still won and then again the same situation after Michael left. Speaking of Michael, I was amused to see he came third in a motorcycle race in Hungary! Michael is having a lot of fun in his private life trying different challenges. It seems he can set a high standard whatever he tries as long as it has an engine and wheels. It’s not a surprise to be honest but its nice to see he’s enjoying himself.”

source: FerrariĀ 

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