Massa's Blog

We have made a step forward

May 10, 2012 · Posted by Felipe Massa
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I have just arrived in Barcelona and I can’t wait for the race weekend to start after what was quite a long break since the last Grand Prix. The most important part of this break of three weeks between Bahrain and the Spanish Grand Prix was obviously the test in Mugello. It was good to make use of this extra time, although I am not sure quite how useful it was. Don’t get me wrong, it’s always useful to test, but in order to run at Mugello, we “lost” one test before the start of the season and I’m not sure if that is the way to go. However, I have to say it was absolutely fantastic to drive a Formula 1 car at Mugello again. It’s a great track, the one where I had my first ever drive in a Formula 1 car and I also have happy memories of racing in junior categories there. It was great to be there, especially when you race for Ferrari, because even at the test, there was a big turn out of spectators to support us. It is a bit too early to say how much progress we have made with this test and the real answer will not come until maybe the qualifying session in Barcelona on Saturday. But for sure we have made a step forward, with new parts, which Fernando tried on the last of the three days in Mugello, producing more performance and now we will have even more new parts to assess on Friday at the Catalunya track. There is no doubting how hard everyone has been working at Mugello during this break in the calendar and even before then, but all the other teams will have been developing their cars. We have said it many times before, but it is still true today; we must make a bigger step forward than the teams who were faster than us in the first part of the season. This season, the field is very close so the smallest change to a car can make a big difference. Already in Bahrain, I was feeling more comfortable and more confident in the car, as we had by then already improved our pace and the way the car worked with the tyres.

Apart from the test, I have spent some time in Maranello: I had a day in the simulator and later, we organised a very nice evening, as I went to dinner with all the mechanics and engineers who work on my car. It is always fantastic to be with the guys, not just at the track, but also away from it in a more relaxed environment. Then, this Tuesday I was at the Fiorano track for the event Ferrari organised to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of the death of Gilles Villeneuve. His son Jacques drove one of his old cars: he and I were team-mates at Sauber in 2005 and we occasionally meet up as we have a good relationship. It was nice to see him drive his father’s car on this important day. I was too young to have watched Gilles on television, but I have seen all the footage and even if the Dijon race is the one you see most, more than that, I liked the amazing videos that allowed you to see his incredible driving style. I didn’t drive his car, but a few years ago, when Ferrari had a party to celebrate its sixtieth anniversary, I drove one of Niki Lauda’s F1 cars. It was very nice to drive, with plenty of mechanical grip but virtually no aero downforce and plenty of power through an old-style gearbox. You drove them sideways in those days, so completely different to today. Actually, the day before that, I drove an even older car, one of the ones used by Farina – that was very different with the throttle pedal in the middle and the brake on the right, which was pretty confusing!

Back to the present and I am looking forward to racing in Barcelona. I have some good memories from there, I had a great race in 2007, when I had a big fight with Fernando actually, going into the first corner, before going on to win the Grand Prix. The following year was also good for me, as I finished second. Of course, it is the track that every F1 driver has spent more time driving than any other, if you take into account all the tests we do there, but you never really know it, because it is different every time and it can be cold or hot or wet and just the slightest change in temperature can have a big effect on how the car behaves. I hope that this year my result could come close to what I achieved in those two years: at least it is the right direction to follow.

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12 responses so far


  • Thursday, 10 May 2012 03:16 by Noe Izumi
    We can't wait, Felipe :-) Have a GREAT race!
  • Thursday, 10 May 2012 09:39 by Anie
    <3 Massaaaaa <3 ^^ Go, Baby, GO!!!
  • Friday, 11 May 2012 10:24 by James
    Massa you need to focus on your performance and not what feel say about you. You made me start watching formula one races and you outdid everyone on the track. Remember because of you Ferrari won the last manufacturer championship. Keep going in Spain
  • Saturday, 12 May 2012 11:11 by Karl
    Bring home a points finish or a podium or better yet a win! Good luck!!!
  • Thursday, 17 May 2012 01:48 by Giaco
    Gooooo Felipe !!! We trust you !!! and I´m convinced you will have more luck during the next Races !!! ;)Just enjoy racing !!! And never forget we´ll stand together, in good Times as in bad Times !!! We all know you are a Champion and one of the best Drivers, but you have to know it, too (Never forget this!!!). We want to see you happy !!! We love you !!! :)
  • Thursday, 7 Jun 2012 04:15 by FerrariFan
    Hi Felipe - long overdue message to say 'well done' in Monaco and 'keep up the good work'! You go out there in Montreal and keep racking-up those points - prove to everyone just what a skilful, tenacious and competitive racing driver I know you really are - like I said before: onwards and upwards - good luck on Sunday!
  • Monday, 11 Jun 2012 05:17 by Ferrari Fan
    Hi again Felipe - nothing ever seems to come easy for you lately does it but we saw you make a couple of brilliant moves to defend your position in Canada and you made a really good recovery after the spin - it's a pity that you only gained the one point after all your hard work - but your luck must be due to change for the better soon (fingers crossed!).
  • Friday, 29 Jun 2012 01:16 by Ferrari Fan
    Oh my goodness Felipe - it's as if your Ferrari has some kind of invisible magnet that keeps pulling the other cars right into you just as you are making good progress - you were totally blameless (as in most of the incidents involving you) but just unbelievably unlucky again?? Please don't give up Felipe because (like I said before) it's the 'law of averages' that MUST change your luck for the better eventually - stay strong and positive and you will score some valuable points at Silverstone and be able to take a smidgen of pride in a job well done (which will also boost your confidence).
  • Friday, 13 Jul 2012 04:29 by Ferrari Fan
    Parabéns e bem feito Felipe because it certainly was a job well done at Silverstone - two jobs in fact - 5th in Q3 and 4th at the chequered flag - it was so good to see the 'old' Felipe back out there on track racing for all his worth and picking up a well-deserved 10 points - you just keep on proving me right Mr Massa and do the same again (or even better) at Hockenheim!!
  • Wednesday, 25 Jul 2012 07:05 by Ferrari Fan
    Hi Felipe - you just have to take it on the chin and grow even stronger and more determined as a result of all the bad luck you've had to endure in recent times (more than your fair share it has to be said?) - IF it hadn't rained in the Hockenheim qualifying last week things would have turned out very differently - to be mid-field at the start can be 'hairy' for ANY driver because of the maniacal jostling of those last dozen cars or so - you still did well to recover Felipe so relegate it to the past and KNOW that you will have a much better race in Hungary this weekend!!
  • Friday, 7 Sep 2012 04:59 by Ferrari Fan
    WELL DONE Felipe - 3rd fastest lap of the race in Monza and it was good to see that at least ONE red car was able to 'fight tooth and nail' in Spa for those valuable Ferrari points - it looked like you relished the battle Felipe so brace yourself again for Monza on Sunday and go out there and make a name for yourself - think 'podium' and know that IT IS POSSIBLE!!
  • Thursday, 13 Sep 2012 03:26 by Ferrari Fan
    WOW Felipe ~ 3rd on the grid at Monza and a whirlwind start to get you up to 2nd before the first corner ~ I was holding my breath as you tried to pass your old Nemesis and steal the lead but you didn't quite pull it off ~ so unlucky not to be standing on that (elusive) podium in front of your adoring Tifosi but you drove a very impressive race and scored valuable points ~ when you're on form you are an exciting driver to watch Felipe and I hope you excite us again in Singapore!!

 

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