In the past few years, the expression “another sunny day in Mokpo,” has been used with a sense of irony as the weather has generally been poor, and in fact, very wet.
But Thursday, as the Korean Grand Prix weekend gets underway, it really is a beautifully hot and sunny day, with the mountains and lake behind the paddock looking picture postcard-pretty.
Felipe Massa’s disposition was as sunny as ever, when he faced the media in the official FIA Press Conference this afternoon. Inevitably, much of the questioning concerned the Brazilian’s future and what he might be doing next year.
“I have talked to a few teams and there seem to be some good opportunities, but for now I am concentrating on the last races and we will say something when the time is right,” he said, before adding that he had not changed his mind about what sort of drive he would accept. “I am quite optimistic that we can find a good solution, but I want a car that gives me the possibility to fight for good results in the races, otherwise I am not interested.”
When it comes to the final six rounds of 2013, Felipe is keen to do well. “At the moment, I feel good and I’m comfortable in the car, which is why I have scored important points in the last races and qualifying is also going well,” reckoned the Ferrari man.
“I hope to carry on like that, maybe getting better results and podiums for me and the team. It would be a nice way to finish a long and nice time together.”
Asked about comments from Pat Fry and Nik Tombazis that the change of tyre construction during the season and not always going in the right direction in terms of car development, were the reasons for Ferrari’s drop in performance in the mid-season, the Brazilian painted a more general picture of the difficulties faced by the Scuderia.
“Clearly, if you don’t have a car capable of winning then you are not doing a perfect job,” he stated. “There are so many little things that didn’t work as well as they should, so I don’t think we can single out one or two aspects, but we need to look at the car as a whole.”
The two technical chiefs had also mentioned that the remaining six Friday practice sessions would also serve to evaluate a small number of components for 2014. How did Felipe feel about this, given that he will not be driving a Prancing Horse car next year. “I hope they give me everything they can to test for next year,” he replied with a big grin across his face. “But to be honest, there will not be much we can test now, as next year’s cars are so different.”
Another topic aimed at Felipe and the others on the panel was next year’s calendar, currently showing 22 races. “It’s a lot and I’m not concerned just for us drivers, but also it will be hard on the team,” he maintained.
“I am not against more races, but with a little bit more thought we could have a nice calendar, so that for example we don’t have a race in Japan on its own, then go back to Europe and then have to return to this part of the world for a race two weeks later.” (Ferrari)
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