Massa: It’s nice to be still driving for Ferrari

Felipe Massa Ferrari

Felipe Massa in the cockpit of his Ferrari F2012

Nov.1 (Ferrari) The penultimate set of back to back races ends in Abu Dhabi this weekend, just a few days after the thrilling Grand Prix of India. For Felipe Massa, this afternoon was his first appearance at an official FIA conference since the news that he would be driving for Scuderia Ferrari in 2013 and that was the first topic.

Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari in the press conference. Formula One World Championship, Rd18, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Preparations, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, UAE, Thursday 1 November 2012.“It’s nice to be still driving for Ferrari,” he began. “It’s been a long time, coming to my eighth championship with Ferrari, not counting the fact I signed a contract with the Scuderia when I was very young and not yet driving in F1. It is a very nice feeling and for now I am looking forwarding to finishing this season well in the last races of the championship. But apart from that I am also concentrating 100% on having a very competitive 2013.”

As for why his performance has improved in the latter part of the season, the Brazilian cited a few reasons. “The car development suited me a bit better and also, you need to consider that I did have some good races in the early part of the year, running at a good pace, but the result was not there at the end, for various reasons,” commented Felipe. “

“But after August everything started working in the right direction, with less problems in the race and I qualified a bit higher up the grid. Also, I had a slightly different mental approach from then on, deciding that if things went ok that was fine, but if they did not, then I should not be concerned about it and after that, I started to enjoy the racing much more, like I always did in the past, getting in the car, hoping to have fun. When you do that the results come.”

Felipe Massa on his bicycle at Yas MarinaAs to the question of who deserves to win the title more, his team-mate Fernando Alonso or Sebastian Vettel, Felipe was generous enough to praise the German driver as well as the Spaniard.
“I think both of them have done a fantastic job so far, in Sebastian’s case, particularly in the second part of the championship,” he began. “We are not talking about one guy in the championship with many victories and the other not. So, in the end, whoever wins, we will say he deserves it. Hopefully Fernando will win!”

For many F1 drivers, Abu Dhabi means only the airport, the hotel at the track and the circuit itself, but Felipe has always liked to see something of his surroundings, so unlike most of his colleagues on the FIA panel today, he did at least have something to say to an enquiry from the local media!

“Last year I played in a football match here which was fun and I have seen quite a lot of Abu Dhabi. It’s a really nice place to come with great restaurants and nice hotels and it seems to be growing, so that every year there is something new to see. As for the race, it is unique in its format and great for the spectators to watch and this year, I hope it will be a great race for Ferrari.”

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