Massa wants shorter F1 races

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Felipe Massa wants F1 testing to count towards the championship

With the Formula 1 teams’ association set to announce its plans for the future of F1 (more on that later) Felipe Massa has served up a side show to the main event with some entertainingly barmy suggestions of his own.

He wants F1 races to be shorter: ??because in the last 15 laps nobody cares about the race any more.?? I remember the last few laps of the Belgian and Brazilan rounds last year being the best action we saw all year thanks to some late rain showers we would have missed if the races had been 15 laps shorter.

But that’s nothing compared to Massa’s next idea, which can only be parody:

Friday is not so important for the show, so you can use the Saturday morning, and take away the Friday, and do two, three or four (test) sessions during the season, not together, separated, making a testing championship.

Maybe the winner has a bonus for the championship, or whatever you want to give.

A testing championship? Surely he didn’t suggest that seriously?

Hopefully FOTA’s plans will be much better than this when they announce them.

Massa concluded by saying: ??If everybody has an opinion and suggests ideas, all together we can make a good championship.?? In which case my opinion is that we all ignore Massa’s suggestions, and instead file them under ??things we’ll pretend he never said?? along with ‘Silverstone isn’t flat enough’.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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57 comments on “Massa wants shorter F1 races”

  1. stick to the driving felipe!!

    leave the great ideas to men like max and bernie. oh hold that sounds just like one of there ideas!!!!

  2. Hahaha, I never knew Felipe was a retard.
    I wonder what the cars would look like if he also had ideas for the technical regulations.

    “Maybe the winner has a bonus for the championship, or whatever you want to give.”
    – A rubber ducky! :)

    And what’s with the test thing? Is he a cricket fan?

    1. jajajajajaja! Epic! A Ferrari V10 powered rubber ducky =)

  3. @jayb: exactly …

    these words come to my mind:
    “If the Ferrari president is right about the Singapore Grand Prix being a circus then we have to be grateful to him for providing the clowns.”
    so Felipe do your job and leave to us to decide how long show must go on …

  4. pseudohendrix
    4th March 2009, 19:54

    Brilliant. Thank you Felipe.

    I imagine he’s just putting in a word for his beloved team mate Kimi, who i’m sure would be in favour of shorter races. That way, he can get to the bar sooner…

    1. Yeah, but don’t forget that Kimi would have less time for his late-race fast lap times, so perhaps this is Massa’s way of gaining an advantage, esp. if the FOTA recommends a point for fastest lap ….;)

  5. Brilliant idea, Felipe!
    And if we make the races only 15 laps, the cars won’t wear out their tyres and think how much money that would save!
    Then we can have a ‘Who Can Get In The Car Without Falling Over’ championship, or maybe a ‘Getting Your Helmet On The Right Way Round’ championship.

  6. What a bummer, he only wants the races shorter because he either crashes after 10 laps or the car breaks down!

  7. if they reduce the race distances, i won’t be able to get my full sunday nap. seriously though, we only get 1 and a half hours of racing every 2 to 3 weeks as it is.

  8. Shorter by two laps is what Massa has in mind, judging by what happened in Hungary and Brazil last year.

    1. Thats exactly what I was thinkin! :D
      We have a psychic in our midst!! :P

  9. All that not winning the championship has gone to his head.

  10. Terry Fabulous
    4th March 2009, 20:32

    “If everybody has an opinion and suggests ideas, all together we can make a good championship.”

    That is the truth.

    The rest is certainly not what I agree with.

  11. Terry Fabulous
    4th March 2009, 20:33

    Although if we make the races 15 laps longer then the last 15 laps won’t be the last 15 laps anymore and that will make them interesting again!
    Or is that just dumb logic!!

  12. All that extra money that Bernie gives Ferrari has not made them any smarter

  13. If anything the races need to be longer, so the stewards can wake up in time to give drive-thru penalties where they are deserved.

    Seriously what’s the point of spending all that money just to go racing for 1 hour? Some of the races need to be longer. What needs to happen is for the regulations to be relaxed, and refuelling to be banned. Therefore they would become more eventful.

  14. Yer i think brazil i cared about the last 15 laps and most likely so did he, nothing to do with the small case of losing the world championship?

  15. Well, we could have two races on Sunday that were half as long or less, maybe with an inverted grid for the second go. That wacky idea has been tried somewhere or another I think. I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt—that he really wants more motivation to get to the front sooner.

  16. StrFerrari4Ever
    4th March 2009, 21:23

    seems that tache he was sporting at the start of this year has made him go a bit cuckoo well Massa stick to the job mate your at Ferrari so you shouldn’t be moaning get on with the job and show us what your here to do Geezer :)

  17. Oh God, what an awfull, awfull idea…

  18. Massa, oh please, when races would get shorter, you’ll still have last 15 or so laps unless we’ll have 14-lap or no race! Come on, if you omit last 15 days ’cause you think we don’t care(!), then new shorter races will also have last laps. Last laps are unavoidable Massa, get used to them. I know Hungary and Brazil are still pain in the ass, OK, but everything has a begining has an end Massa. You’d better be prepared to focus the whole race.

    Btw, I always thought drivers want to do racing instead of silly and dull testing. Massa just shocked me.

  19. No fridays – fine, but shorter races? – no way. If I was in charge I would made 5 hours races – I love long races :D And his argumentation that last laps are boring is just stupid (to me): if last 10 laps of 2 hours race are boring then the same can happen to last ten laps of one hour race, just like it can be that last 10 laps of 2 hours race can be amazing like it was in Belgium’08.
    But i’m happy its not Max or Bernies ideas.

  20. Robert McKay
    4th March 2009, 21:40

    “Btw, I always thought drivers want to do racing instead of silly and dull testing. Massa just shocked me.”

    Yes, not exactly comments of a racer now, are they.

    Maybe he said it to win a bet or something. Maybe Massa is being impersonated by a doppelganger.

  21. “Testing championship” is a stupid idea, shorter races are really bad, but there’s a fine proposition in what he said, that is to take the Friday away and, on the other hand, allow some testing sessions, even though I think that having a shorter Grand Prix week won’t impact that much in terms of costs, since the transportation expenses remain the same… what they could do is make longer Grand Prix weekends, using the thrusday

  22. This is looking like one of those rare things we all agree on, like Martin Brundle being hired by the BBC for 2009

  23. @fakemaxmosley suggested Massa had to get over his height complex.

    Massa is such a twerp. I was almost liking him after his dignified response to losing the WDC last year but now he’s back to being a spoiled brat.

  24. no fridays, shorter races, fewer cars finishing the race due to testing cuts and still €400 for a weekend grand stand seat! no thanks!

  25. As I noted on Twitter, I think Phil likes to open his mouth to switch feet. he seems to do it a lot.

  26. Oh dear, I’m speechless…

  27. that comment just made him look EXTREMELY stupid. a testing championship? what the heck does that even mean? just stick to the driving Felipe.

  28. hehe… but Massa does have a history of pretty childish and brainless comments, so to be expected.

  29. Robert McKay: “Btw, I always thought drivers want to do racing instead of silly and dull testing. Massa just shocked me.”

    – Yup. It’s as if Michael Jordan proposed that instead of him and his team playing basketball games, people should watch him tieing his shoes. Or as if Jenna Jameson proposed people watch her brushing teeth.

    1. With regards to Jenna Jameson brushing her teeth, I’m sure there is a collective of people out there would would pay plenty to see that.

  30. if bernie reads this comments page lmao he’ll find that 99% of the fans think these massa ideas are stupid me included….if the races were 15 laps shorter, it would be less of an event if you see what i mean…

  31. Ah, Felipe. Almost win a world championship and the world cares about your opinion huh? Your kind of full of yourself. And no, I don’t believe the entire grid was rooting for you. I wasn’t.

    Keep the races the same distance Pleas!

  32. Funny, I hear Briatore wants shorter races too. :/ I never liked that man, he should be in Hollywood, not in F1.

  33. yeah Phillipe…the last 15 laps at Brazil last year were soooo boring, weren’t they????!

  34. What exactly would a testing champsionship entail? Prizes for whose car blows up last? The winner is the one least disturbed by a sandstorm? The mind boggles.

    As for shorter races, well you can stick that in your pipe and smoke it. Although by the sounds of Flippy’s comments he has been smoking a little something already…

  35. I dunno what planet Fillipe is from, but he needs to shut his trap and go back there.

    In my serious opinion all races should be at least 2 hrs long. that way the tv companies know exactly how long their show is gonna have to last (say 4hrs long to cover race build up and after race reviews and interviews). And talking about the last 15 laps being boring, it’s only because of team orders not letting team mates battle each other after the last pit stop and having to save engines and tyres. But as has been said already there have been some really good races where the last 15 laps or so have been amazing.

    And a final note i believe Massa is a one trick pony and last years championship is gonna be the closest he’s gonna get the the trophy now.

  36. How about they only race at turkey, bahrain and brazil as well…so you can win a championship? Massa shouldn’t be in F1, let alone ferrari.

    1. I’ve always thought that. He’s a Sauber test driver, at best.

  37. I never like him. Full of air. Remember 2008 Brazilian GP pre-race? Kept saying that he would be a fair and worthy champion ……while conveniently forgetting that Belgian GP was handed to him on a plate + plus some other FIA decisions that always seemed to deliver him some free points.

    With all that help, he still cant beat Lewis… Put Vettel or Kubica in his car and they would stroll to the title effortlessly…. Massa is lucky he still has a seat at Ferrari and probably because he is Schumacher’s biggest boot-licker… something worthy races like Herbest, Barrichello and Irvine would never stomach.

  38. This is utterly fascinating. I expected to see lots of idea-bashing but we get so much more Massa-bashing.

    1. I thin it’s just because people expect F1 drivers to enjoy racing – not talk about cutting back on races and making testing more important. He seems a bit out of touch with what F1’s appeal is.

  39. Seems to me that Felipe has learnt a few things from Hamilton here.

    We all give you the same advice we always give to Lewis; Felipe. ” DON’T TALK TOO MUCH; D-R-I-V-E “

  40. It seems everyone is agreed that Massa should stick to driving and not try to come up with any ideas about changing F1.

    As people have already said if you get rid of the last 15 laps, the new last 15 laps will then have the same problems, that after the last pit stop teams turn down the engines and stop racing. F1 should stick to the current distance/time rules for a Grand Prix length, personally I am worried that Bernie and Max will decide to introduce gimmicks such as shorter races, reverse grids etc and other ideas which they would claim would improve the spectacle for TV.

    What I thought was the stupidest comment was to include testing in the championship, if that happened testing would just turn into another race weekend with a different format, teams wouldn’t use the track time to test new and risky ideas instead it would be more like free practice.

    I don’t know if the cost argument about getting ridding of Friday practice to have a few big tests in the year works, or if race goers themselves would prefer it. Before the testing ban was announced I always thought of getting rid of mid season testing and make Fridays a test day free of engine limits and other restrictions. Or how about having a testing session the Monday after some GPs like MotoGP do.

  41. ||In which case my opinion is that we all ignore Massa’s suggestions, and instead file them under “things we’ll pretend he never said”||

    By same logic having treated (neglected) Fan’s opinion identically the way the blogger had quoted here ever since they have taken control of F1 Bernie/Max have done great job I guess. No doubt their conscience always stays clear when they seek to stick to powerful positions in the sports though the Fan’s perceive These two senile Men have “harmed the sports”

    The Score
    Arm Chair Experts – 1
    People in Sports – 0

  42. If you’re going to have a testing competition, it should really challenge the mettle of the drivers and the cars!

    How about during the winter testing season, somewhere north of Montreal? Teams could certainly check out the front wings really well (what is the best shape for snow – that should get the CFD simulations humming), Bridgestone could do some serious testing of its rubber in the cold, drivers could pace themselves against the locals, human and otherwise. The commentators can have a great old time rubbing their hands looking for maybe another Gilles Villeneuve… You can be sure there will be crowds (especially if it coincides with the Quebec winter carnival).

    Add this Winter Test to the oval race and you might truly find The Compleat Driver.

  43. wait so a 15 lap race on a track which is quite costly to run due to the poison dwarf charging a lot for races. And the track might be tedious eg Bahrain and plus the money which you mwould spend, air travel money would be a waste and not a huge attendance due to location and prestige.

  44. graham228221
    5th March 2009, 12:41

    weren’t there similar suggestions along these lines at the end of last season?

    sounds like everyone has forgotten this:

    maybe massa isn’t so crazy after all, as he’s not the first to have suggested making practice sessions more competitive.

    although this was raised by the teams before the in-season testing ban was made, presumably they would now rather be concentrating on serious testing rather than trying to set the fastest time.

  45. Felipe is the driver, you are a journalist. Who deserves to be heared first?

  46. Testing is testing. Racing is racing.

    One is research. One is application. What’s so difficult to understand – NO, a ‘testing championship’ does not make any sense.

  47. Just when I start to develop some respect for Felipe, the way he handled losing last year, he then goes and says this junk!

    I think its a form of Post Traumatic Syndrome, and he can’t control himself any more. He may a danger to himself and others if all he wants to do is quit early, ban the rascal I say!

  48. PJA: “As people have already said if you get rid of the last 15 laps, the new last 15 laps will then have the same problems,”

    – No, no, no. You are all not thinking properly. The longer into the race, the more spread apart is the field. Duh! The cars are obviously not spread apart on lap 35 as they are on lap 60. This is why the last laps may often be boring.
    The reason for this is that F1 is a (very) uncompetetive racing series, and also because there aren’t many cars in the field.

  49. Mussolini's Pet Cat
    5th March 2009, 16:50

    i guess there’s only one race he wished was shorter (by 1 lap) : Brazil 2008

  50. What we must remember is that these words completely undermine the feelings of F1 fans everywhere, including Massa’s.
    When Massa lost the title in Brazil, he behaved in a
    manner fitting in any sport. He showed grace, compassion, and professionalism in defeat. He was a worthy representative to his country, who turned out in their droves to see him crowned champion.
    In the end, he was undone due to circumstances beyond anyones control. His defeat was down to the weather
    changing so rapidly, it caught people off guard, created
    To be quite frank, you have to look at the facts. And they are that F1 are the shortest races in timespan of all three of the top racing series. In saying that, I would hate to see four hour races at Valencia or Hungary, but an hour or less of racing is just not on.
    These drivers, and Massa is not alone, need to remember who ‘REALLY’ pays for the yachts, the girls, and the globe trotting. The fans and the sponsors.
    All this talk that they are there just to drive is
    garbage. They represent their teams, and inturn Formula One. Murray Walker once said back in 2007 that Raikkonen wasn’t paid ‘to be a comedian’ but to drive.
    Fair point Mr Walker, but is it really that difficult and taxing to give interviews and press statements on a reported $45 million a year?
    Is it? I rest my case Your Honour!

  51. Would Massa, or any other driver, like a pay cut?

    Maybe a 5per cent cut for each lap the race is shortened by?

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