Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Mugello, 2012

Alonso hails Massa as “one of the best”

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Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Mugello, 2012In the round-up: Fernando Alonso gives a vote of confidence for his under-fire team mate.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

“When I take my overall I’m a son; a brother and a friend; like any of you” (Fernando Alonso)

“[Felipe Massa is] one of the best drivers in the world, and he has shown it during his whole career. It?s easy to praise when you have a good car but also to criticise when you have a bad one. I lived similar situations during my last stint at Renault, when some of my team mates were unfairly criticised and now, they are being praised once again.”

Force India handed ??650,000 legal bill in copyright dispute (BBC)

“Force India have been ordered by a High Court judge to pay ??650,000 legal costs to the Caterham team and their chief technical officer Mike Gascoyne.”

Ferrari upgrades in detail (Sky)

More pictures of the configuration Ferrari ran their F2012 in the final day of the Mugello test.

Sauber F1 Team – Track Presentation Barcelona (YouTube)

The Wolff at F1’s door (ESPN)

“I’m a development driver, which means I’ll be doing a lot of work in the simulator. I’ll be doing a couple of straight-line tests to get used to the car. This year I’m not doing the Young Drivers’ Test, because they’ve already been assigned to other drivers – Valtteri Bottas is the third driver at Williams – but I’ll be doing a track test in an older car.”

Spain?s King Juan Carlos awarded FIA Academy prize (FIA)

“The prestigious award was conferred to King Juan Carlos in recognition of his dedicated and boundless support of motor sport clubs in Spain as well as his enthusiastic involvement with a number of other sporting organisations in his country.”

The President of the FIA, Jean Todt, visits HRT Formula 1 Team?s new facilities (HRT)

“The facilities are impressive, modern and functional. You can see that everything is brand new and it will be even better once they?ve spent a couple of months there working. I wish the best for the future of HRT.”

F1 Fanatic via Twitter

“No F1 this weekend but it’s the Six Hours of Spa on Saturday, live coverage from 1pm on Motors TV in the UK. Last WEC race before Le Mans! Also it’s the first Formula Renault 3.5 race of the year. How will they get on with DRS? Race one live on Eurosport at 1:30pm on Saturday. And WTCC and Auto GP on Eurosport, and delayed coverage of the second Formula Renault race.”

Jenson Button Formula 1 Driver – Original self portrait Canvas – Face Britain Listed for charity (eBay)

A self-portrait of Jenson Button being auctioned for charity.

Meet Sonia Irvine: F1???s Entertainment Doyenne (Sybarite)

“Sonia Irvine, sister of F1 driver Eddie Irvine, has been throwing pop up parties for celebrities, F1 teams and fans of the sport. Our Sybarites managed to interview her about her personal story and business venture Amber Lounge.”

Comment of the day

Some interesting thoughts from DavidS on tyres in F1:

I think that the difference between the tyres is still too narrow. The difference between the prime and option in the race is that the prime lasts a few laps longer and is slightly slower, but doesn?t have a different character compared to the option.

If the harder tyres were designed to wear more gradually (i.e. a steady degradation, rather than “falling off the cliff”), took much longer to switch on, but lasted a long time and could take a lot more punishment without graining. Combined with the softer tyres being incredibly fast, but fragile and prone to “falling off the cliff,” we would see some interesting strategies.

Also, getting rid of the rule that requires them to use both compounds in the race would open up the possibilities further. That way, each driver?s strategy is immediately obvious to everyone ?ǣ drivers on an aggressive strategy would use the softs, whereas drivers playing the long game would be on the hards.

I think that the tyres should be chosen so that the hard tyre should enable someone to complete the race on one stop if they drive with care, and the soft tyre being somewhere between two and three stops. Drivers could do three stints of aggressive driving on softs; two stints on hards; or one very long stint on hards and an attacking stint on softs; or two stints on hards.

The two-tyre rule prevents the first two strategies from being used, leaving only variations on the latter.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Sush Meerkat!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

We got stuck into the overtaking debate yesterday but it was going on 12 months ago as well. In the press conference ahead of the Turkish Grand Prix Vitaly Petrov was among those arguing passing had become too easy:

Image ?? Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo

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  • 115 comments on “Alonso hails Massa as “one of the best””

    1. Stop it, Fernando, you’re killing me.

      1. ShaneB457 (@shaneb12345678910)
        5th May 2012, 0:41

        I really dont get this.. Massa is going through a tough time at the moment and his teammate is sticking up for him like any teamate should.
        People seem to forget that he was so close to being world champion in 2008..give him a chance cause he’s only human.. Im sure he will rediscover some of his early form..

        Its not easy being in the position he is, the way Alonso is clearly favoured by the team..

        Massa is one of the best drivers in the world in my opinion..

        1. Agreed Shane, it was interesting to get a glimpse of Alonso’s insight of the issue.

          Felipe is one of the best, regardless of current form. Only 3 other drivers without a WDC have more wins than Massa (11)

          Moss at 16
          Coulthard at 13
          and Carlos Reutemann at 12.

        2. Massa is nowhere close to one of the best drivers in the world. But to give him due credit, he was really good when he had a great car under him. In 2007 and 2008 he showed that he was good enough to battle with Alonso, hamilton and Kimi, so i wouldn’t put it beyond him to put in strong performances when he has a great car.

          But to be one of the best drivers you need to be versatile – You need to adapt to a sub par car, you need to adapt quickly to new tyres, and you need to be consistent and constantly motivated. Felipe posseses none of these qualities, so I do not know how you can call him one of the best.

          1. Massa is nowhere close to one of the best drivers in the world.

            Disagree. He’s an F1 driver so yes he is. He may be being hammered by Alonso but there’s 7billion people in the world and only 20 odd end up on the F1 grid. Sure, barely anyone really gets a good crack at F1 unless they have oodles of cash but he’s a Ferrari driver, he was runner up in 08, amazing in 07 and 09 and came back after near death to get good podiums and an almost win in 2010. Massa may be suffering at the minute and whether he deserves his seat is another question but I think some are far too harsh with their criticism of Massa. Look at everything he’s been through, what car he’s got and who his team mate is. He could be doing better sure and maybe others could do better in his seat but I still admire him and I still consider him one of the best drivers in the world with all things considered. He might not be the top of the crop like Vettel or Alonso but they’re total freaks of nature. They are the best not just one of the best.

            1. Nicely said @steph. And glad to see Alonso praising Massa. I think it is clear that Massa is struggling with this car (and I hope with an improved car, he can recover to 2010 form), but I think that for Ferrari, Massa is a reliable and well know quantity, and I think the two drivers work pretty well together (though cynically, Alonso would think so, as he’s faster of course …).

            2. Yes @Steph! I knew you’d have commented, and, no surprise here, I fully agree!

            3. Well said @Steph People do seem to forget that you don’t just arrive in F1 without being mega impressive in other formula.

            4. Well said @steph

            5. sid_prasher (@)
              5th May 2012, 21:02

              Well said @steph. I think people forget that the biggest contributor for a performance on track is the car itself.

            6. A lot of support from people,huh …. ;-)
              With all due respect to all the posters and their opinions, i’ll just like to express mine.
              we will see how good he is when Ferrari drop him next year – we will see whether he gets a seat in any other team. That will be a good indicator.
              There is always some statistical excuse, “of the seven billion people in the world there are only 20 F1 drivers”, – mutually exclusive – not all of the 7 billion are f1 drivers who he bettered individually.
              He is a moderate driver who drives a car well if it is tailor made for him – easy on tires, with heating issues and a lot of grip on the rear end like it was in 2008. I dont think this years Ferrari (or any Ferrari from the post Rory Bryne era) is tailor made for any one in particular. And with the amount of talent in the grid – both young and old – it is a travesty to call him ‘one of the best’. It will be an insult to the people there who are doing an infinitely better job with same or worser equipment – That is literally true before last race since he was on ZERO points.

            7. @alfz – You could consider him moderate compared to todays grid, but the point is that even someone who is performing poorly in the pinnacle of motorsport is still a very good driver relative to a lot of professional drivers.

            8. @David-A, i respect your opinion. He might deserve another chance, perhaps in a better car. But currently ferrari seem to have forgotten their craft. The longer he stays here, the worser his rep. is hit. But then again SF have always been good to him, for whatever reason. This really is a dilemmatic situation. That much is sure. Lets see how it goes….

        3. I think massa is one of the best drivers of the sport too, but he just could not have the right car in these years. Look at the past years, in 2008 the championship was gone by the renault accident scandel which accured to give fernando a win! Then 2009 was oweful for ferrari by kimi and felipe and end with a life-treated accident for him,2010 was his comeback to sport and after second place in the opening rece, Bahrain, that was not so good for ferrari, but the key factor was German grandprix and the team order, that ruin felipe win and at the end of season gives nothing to ferrari and alonso! 2011 was the alonso,s team. ferrari just try to give fernando a good car. They made a car that totally suited fernando’s driving style, but felipe was just called to cut some point from rivals! How could you explain these things? I think the best thing for felipe is to leave ferrari and try another team.

          1. It is all part of team politics and unavoidable. Unlike Kimi , who prefers slightly over-steering cars (which are the norm), FA prefers his cars neutral and he adapts to changes rapidly. So, no luck here even if SF do the dumbest of dumb things and develop a unstable under-steering car like they did in 2008 & 2009.
            I love the options that SF have. Either they can do away with Massa and risk everything on Perez, who can also suck just as much or worser – like FI hero Fisichella did in the F2009. Or stay with Massa and kiss the WCC goodbye.

      2. Was anybody expecting to see Fernando bashing Massa on record? He said what he had to say, doesn’t mean I agree with him, however, as usual, he made some valuable points on the correlation Driver/Car, but the problem with Massa is that we’re not even comparing him to guys driving better cars but with his (though above the average) teammate.

      3. xeroxpt (@)
        5th May 2012, 20:08

        I guess Fernando is really worried about Lewis Hamiltons expiring contract with Mclaren.

        1. Ferrari will never hire Hamilton with Alonso already on board. It can only happen if they are seriously stripped of cash and REALLY want that WCC.
          This isn’t essentially a bad thing for Hamilton – two reasons
          1. Ferrari have always been a one driver team. So either one of FA or LH will have to play lap dog to the other. We all know how well it went down in 2007.
          2. With that car of theirs, they might NEED the top drivers but they honestly dont DESERVE them.
          Other than this argument, i wish SF, ML, LH and FM all the very best of luck.

          1. Does anybody know exactly if it is true the rumor of the clause on Alonso’s contract (be # 1 driver)? Anyways I do not see LH in Ferrari. Absolutely Impossible!

    2. April Fool! Oh wait it’s May.

      1. +100

      2. Like!

    3. mmm When Alonso talks about his other teammates and Massa being good but being criticized when they have a bad car. Does he then maybe imply he just is so much better?
      I really feel he just likes him as a teammate, because he is no threat to him and he owns the team.
      Smart man that Alonso ;)

      1. @solidg Exactly how i just read that, translated: “leave Felipe alone, i pity him it must be hard living in my glorious shadow”
        All he’s doing is applying more pressure on Felipe by openly being sympathetic, it’s almost passive aggresive!

      2. You will see what you want to see.

      3. What a pile of rubbish… Ferrari is an F1 Team but a family too. Hamilton won the 2008 World title by 1 point… behind was Massa.

      4. Wow how things change, remember their argument in the 2007 European GP??

    4. Glad to see Bottas will get the young drivers’ test and not Wolff.

      1. It would be crazy to promote her over Bottas for it!

      2. Williams seem to be preparing Bottas to be their #1 driver, much like they did with Hulkenberg (although that didn’t turn out as planned obviously).

    5. I didn’t know Alonso was a funny man :) i like him even more now !!

      1. He does seem to be very nice and a normal guy off the track. Makes me even more confused because of his on-track controversies.

        1. His on track controversies? you know i just think he is a fighter, a very very competitive person !! If you are talking about his team asking Felipe to move over? he is the only person at the moment capable of taking Ferrari to the top, so as a fierce competitor every single point counts, i understand where he is coming from.

        2. @t3x He is a fighter and very competitive, and I don’t have a problem with that. But he’s had a lot of controversies over the years – he’s hardly the fairest driver. Races like Germany 2010, Singapore 2008, Hungary 2007, USA 2007, Hungary 2006…

          I consider him the best driver in F1 and he seems like a very nice guy in real life, but I can’t like him because of those incidents.

          Here’s a good article on that very topic, by @magnificent-geoffrey : http://magnificentgeoffrey.wordpress.com/2012/03/11/why-i-will-never-cheer-for-fernando-alonso/

          1. Just follow his Facebook and Twitter feed, and you’ll truly see he’s a very normal yet hardworking person. How he remains cheerful all the time despite his car is beyond me though.

            1. He is a nice and very very smart person.
              And that intelligence of him is what makes him say these things.
              He bloody well knows why he says this!

          2. @Enigma

            Thanks for the article link, i’ve never seen that one before, it’s a bit over the top especially the whole Hamilton saga, who by the way is no saint ! Alonso was absolutely right to block him in my opinion.

            Anyway, he is just hot headed, and probably overreacts when things don’t go his way, but hey you can’t blame him for that, he is a competitor.

            Incidents like that won’t stop me ranking Alonso as one of my favourite drivers.

          3. pff, @ MG’s piece, you can write articles like that about most drivers on the grid. The best incite emotions. I don’t like Hamilton, but I won’t hold his numerous mistakes against him. Schumacher has committed some of the most underhanded tactics in the sport, and yet I would love to see him win another race. These guys are at the top because they have the fire to win.

          4. very good reading! tks to post this.

    6. Wait, are you guys joking about the guy who beat Kimi Raikkonen in 2008 as teammates; the same year he nearly beat British boy Hamilton to the title?

      Some people have a very short memory.

      1. In F1, 3 years since being competitive isn’t a short amount of time really.

      2. We’re not talkimg about then, this is now!

        1. I’m pretty sure his name is still Felipe Massa. He might be struggling now, but that doesn’t take away anything from his past.

          1. They have a point 2008 is long gone. From 2010 to now he hasn’t had the pace that Ferrari have enjoyed from their second driver of years past. Such as Shumi/Irvine, Shumi/Rubens, Shumi/Massa, and Kimi/Massa.

        2. We’re not talking about now, we’re talking about his whole career. It would be too easy to evaluate Massa based only on his bad results.

      3. massa was epic from 2006 to 2008. (and a bit of 2009). now he’s….

        1. one year of being competitive against a teammate who wasn’t very motivated, and a rival who was in his second year, in a team who were under the scrutiny of the fia doesn’t make a world Class driver

          1. I completely agree mate. When you say the name Felipe Massa, all one remembers is his near miss in 2008. If I be brutally honest, I am glad he lost the 2008 title (no, I am not a Lewis fan) because if he would have won, he would had gone on the path of J. Villeneuve and D. Hill, both of whom never showed much class when the chips were down. F1 would have been looking at yet another un-deserving champion if 2008 had a different ending.

            Many say that Hungary 2009 was the reason for Massa’s slump in form but I fail to agree. In my opinion, it was a bit of Germany 2010, Fernando Alonso and tyre management issues that has plagued him.

            When you say Massa, all you can think of is his 2008 title miss. Do you remember anything else which made you say, “Ah! He is a future world champion!”

            Australia 2008 – his stupid move on DC
            Malaysia 2008 – spun after being beaten by his then motivated team mate
            France 2008 – luck helped him win after Kimi had exhaust troubles
            Britain 2008 – countless spins, the most amongst all drivers (yes, more than Piquet jr.)
            Belgium 2008 – his team mate crashing and Lewis penalised got him the victory
            Japan 2008 – 2 incidents where he was to be blamed completely

            and he picked up a few wins in 2008 when Ferrari was the quickest on that weekend. Only Hungary and Canada springs to my mind as good drives that season.

            1. In my opinion though, Massa would have been better without Ferrari post 2009 or 2010. He would have got some of his confidence back. He really lost the confidence since Germany 2010 and whenever you compare his interviews from pre-Alonso times and now you see a great difference in his body language and his use of words and expressions.

            2. That’s my feeling too. Hamilton had a scrappy year too, but when he shone he really shone, in a way I don’t remember from Massa. He did well only when the car was at its best.

            3. @neelv27

              If I be brutally honest, I am glad he lost the 2008 title (no, I am not a Lewis fan) because if he would have won, he would had gone on the path of J. Villeneuve and D. Hill, both of whom never showed much class when the chips were down.

              Actually, Damon Hill didn’t do too badly (except in 1999 where he apparently lost motivation) he almost won a race in the Arrows, and finished 6th in the championship in 1998, winning at Spa. Villeneuve of course, was indeed terrible for a number of years after 1997.

            4. Britain 2008 – countless spins, the most amongst all drivers (yes, more than Piquet jr.)

              Massa spun 4 times in that race, Raikkonen also spun 4 times in that race in the same car.

          2. Massa was epic in 09 too. He made a good comeback considering everything in 2010. It’s 2011 onwards he’s struggled imo. I don’t buy the Kimi wasn’t motivated line either- in 08 it was Kimi’s turn to get the bad luck and he had to move over at China to help Felipe. I still saw Kimi as a racer throughout 08 and imo 09 was proof of that when he kept bagging all those podiums in a dog of a car.

            You also can’t use ifs and buts in this sport because if I’ve learnt anything from F1 it’s that anything could happen. Massa might have won and gone up and up thanks to his confidence levels or he could have faded out. It’s also not really fair to pick out all of Massa’s mistakes and give him zero credit for the things he did well.

            1. I agree @steph all those redicilous comments about Massa being crap in a bad car were proved wrong in 2009, just remember when he was running 3rd in the rain (rain which he was also supposed to be the worst driver in the world at) in Shanghai only to retire from a car failure. He set the fastest lap at Monaco and fought back to be close to Kimi at the end of the race after losing 20 seconds in traffic. What has happened afterwards is a completely different story, but Felipe Massa was no doubt one of the few best drivers in the world at that time. And definately the most underrated. He never ever got the credit he deserved and now when he’s struggeling everyone basicly says “He was never any good”. But us true Felipe-fans will never stop beleveing in him, will we?

            2. i said he was epic in a bit of 09. ie. until his crash.

        2. massa was epic from 2006 to 2008. (and a bit of 2009). now he’s….

          You mean all of 2009 up until his accident? Saying someone’s a bad driver because they had a bad accident knock them around considerably (he may never really recover) is a bit harsh.

          1. Interesting to see people talk about Felipe’s form in 2009 prior to his near-death experience now, I’ve always thought during the 2009 season prior to Hungary that he clearly outperformed Kimi, who was ill motivated to say the least, not taking anything from Felipe & I DO think in hindsight, had Felipe not had his accident in Hungary then possibly… he would’ve got a win under the belt that season, alongside Kimi’s decisive win at Spa is another question, maybe Ferrari would’ve taken 3rd in the constructors instead of McLaren but anyway it’s all ifs & buts like @Steph said.

            Some people fail to notice that when Ferrari’s had a car capable of challenging Red Bull for pole or race win in both 2010 & 2011, Felipe has been much closer to his superior team-mate in Fernando than in other races, qualifying in particular. Obviously people will remember Hockenheim 2010 but also refer back to Canada & Silverstone 2011, Bahrain & Monza 2010. Both Quali & Race pace has been closer than in any other races although there have been Felipe’s struggles to work with the harder compounds.

            The 24 drivers we currently see on the grid are argubly the best drivers on four wheels if not in the world but remember, 3 drivers are repeatedly renowned as the ‘best of the best’ & the majority of F1 fanatics know the 3 drivers i’m referring to.

            In summary, I think Felipe struggles immensely with a poor car under him although thrives if not matches the car’s capabilities or slightly falls short due to misfortune & this is what makes Fernando the ‘superlative’ driver he is, ‘wrungling’ everything out of the car but Fernando, like Seb as well in Canada last year, is human just like the rest of us & has the occasional struggles (beginning of the race being in example when Felipe was actually pressuring him for P2) & mistakes. Glimpses in 2011 suggest that Felipe’s near-death experience at Hungary & the controversy in Germany has had little psychological affect on him & simply he is just up against one of the ‘best of the best’.

    7. Formula Renault has DRS now? Did they have overtaking problems?

      1. It wasn’t easy but it wasn’t as much of a problem as in F1 I suppose. I guess them using DRS has to do with them trying to be more modern and close to F1 than GP2.

        Great to see they don’t have DRS zones, but rather time limits – a driver will be allowed to use DRS for a certain amount of time over the race. In my view it’s better than the zones.

        1. I agree, much better. Whether it’s needed at all is another question I suppose.

          1. I wonder if the FIA are experimenting with the DRS on a time limit in Renault 3.5 before proposing it for F1.

      2. @matt90 – Formula Renault and GP2 are both trying to establish themselves as the pre-eminent series for young drivers to compete in if they want to go into Formula 1. Where GP2 uses the Pirelli tyres, Formula Renault has adopted the DRS (and possibly KERS). It’s a part of the inter-serie rivalry.

    8. Alonso needs a compliant team-mate at Ferrari as Schumacher had with Rubens, i would suspect that is behind these comments. Let’s face it he’s only going to compliment a team-mate like this when he feels absolutely no pressure from him and is not at all worried he might actually beat him.

      Maybe he’s hoping Massa will keep his seat in 2013 instead Webber coming in as the current rumours suggest.

      1. Short-sighted comment. If Alonso needed a compliant teammate, he would say this. If Alonso was being genuine, he would also say this. Kind of a win-win comment.

        1. The only thing Alonso “needs” is a top 6 car.

      2. …and sorry to keep slagging on you, but I have to say I don’t think Webber would trouble El Nano too much in equal machinery. They have both raced in various equipment in F1 for many overlapping years. The record speaks for itself. That said, I wonder what Massa would have done in last year’s Red Bull… :D

        1. Agree. Fernando beat Webber in 2010 in an inferior car, and almost did it again the next year in a much more inferior car. In the same machinery, Webber wouldn’t be able to match fernando.

    9. no doubt that massa isn’t nearly as good as he once was, but i do wonder sometimes how much of it is massa not being as good and how much is alonso being simply phenomenal.

      1. Probably equally so. Although I hate to say it, given equal equipment Alonso is probably pound for pound the most complete driver at this time, it’s not that other drivers don’t have more raw pace it’s simply Alonso manages situations better and his overall race craft is exceptional. Massa cannot unlock that level of performance, and that must be hard to take, simply giving it everything you have and coming up short must leave him short on motivation.

    10. Interesting to know that Fernando shares his victory money with the mechanics… anyone else (or every other driver) on the grid do that?

      From here

      catalogomonster.jimd @jab… (TT) Do you still share the money you win after a victory with your mechanics?

      Yes, I think it´s fair to share with those who have helped you to get on the podium or win a race. It would be unfair for me to take all the credit.

      1. well you would when you’re earning one of the best salaries in the sport. I’m sure Karthikeyan can’t afford to with is HRT guys.

        1. Nick.UK (@)
          5th May 2012, 1:37

          HRT actually pay their drivers pretty well. Not alongside McLaren or Ferrari especially though. How else would they get drivers there? They dont enjoy the ‘appeal’ that other teams do. From what I read, they get around 200k Euro/year at HRT (2011). Alonso on the other hand was listed at 30 million Euros/year (2011). Not sure how accurate that is, but it will be a comparable amount in any case. He’ll have more money that he knows what to do with. Fair play to him for sharing a bit of it round.

          1. Alonso changed his fiscal residence back to Spain (from Switzerland) last year, meaning he now pays 52% income tax on those 30 plus any other income. “I am not going to be poor anyhow, not a big difference” (not an exact quote) was his comment, Apparently he realises that he has much more than what he will ever need….

        2. Oh, he does because Tata backing karthikeyan :)

        3. I would say that were Karthikeyan to win a race with HRT he would happily share the bonus with the team!

      2. How much does it separate the garage though?

        1. Great question, but maybe not anymore than the race results themselves? There’s always a reason to beat the guy on the other side — money would sure help the mechanics, I’d guess!

    11. Love that presentation by Sauber. No doubt one of my favorite teams just because of the spirit in that team. You can tell that Peter loves this sport more than almost anyone, and the whole team just seams to enjoy being there and working hard to get results. I hope they stick around for some time, they add character to a sometimes overly-bland grid.

    12. Nick.UK (@)
      5th May 2012, 1:31

      It was quite refreshing to read the article about Force India’s legal costs issues. I had 2 Civil Litigation Exams & videoed Advocacy exam on just such matters a couple of months ago. Got my results last week, passed with pretty well :) It’s nice to hear it in a Formula 1 context (not for Force India of course).

      1. Nick.UK (@)
        5th May 2012, 1:49

        I originally wrote ‘passed with flying colours’ then changed it to passed pretty well (didn’t want to toot my own trumpet to loud lol). Guess I didn’t edit close enough haha. Oops!

        1. Congratulations on your exam results! Perhaps Force India could do with you joining their legal team?

        2. Congratulations on the exam then @nick-uk! I like @alianora-la-canta s suggestion, although FI seems to have trouble listening to the advice of their legal team.

    13. Another stand as proof of Ferrari’s favourite driver asking for the second driver’s assistance to challenge for the championship or true team’s spirit. Massa WAS a great driver and Ferrari are not known as a team that allows for drivers to compete against each other.

      1. proof of Ferrari’s favourite driver asking for the second driver’s assistance to challenge for the championship…


        Hate much?

      2. Man, how did you interpret that from anything in the article puzzles me.

        Oh wait, i see a Lewis helmet as your avatar. Now I can understand why you would lash out a driver who is capable of beating his teammate.

        1. Seriously some of Hams fans do so much more damage than good, it’s beyond biased it’s crazy, glad I was blessed with a balanced opinion! PS I am a McLaren fan!

          1. @ F1_Americana, @ Todfod, @ Bigbadderboom
            Just came back from a long wonderful weekend to find these comments here… :) I have got nothing but respect for other fans and am always careful before expressing my option on this site. I don’t see how the Helmet has anything to do with my comment apart from clouded your judgement, I am sorry to say. I don’t hate anyone. I, truly, find it a waste of time. In fact, I think Alonso is the best driver out there but Massa’s lack of pace and Ferrari’s clear favouritism can be disturbing. I just tried to say that that’s probably Alonso’s way of asking for Massa’s help. Poor choice of words. Sorry! I have got no problems with the fact Jenson beat Hamilton last year if that’s what @todfod is insinuating here. Yes, besides the obvious Helmet I like the excitement and fairness in the sport.

    14. I lived similar situations during my last stint at Renault, when some of my team mates were unfairly criticized and now, they are being praised once again.”

      Of the two drivers that were his team-mates in 2008&2009, it’s pretty clear which one he means!

      1. It must be Piquet!

    15. I don’t believe Alonso is being disingenuous with his comments regarding Massa. He’s gone on record before in support of drivers who have been his teammates, and from what I’ve seen Alonso is a lot more open and honest when he’s not dealing with the press.

      Plus, all thing being considered, even as poor as Massa’s been the last few years, how much of that is really due to him being poor and not Alonso simply being outstanding? I’m far from a fan of Alonso, but I still see no reason to doubt him when he says Massa is one of the best.

        1. Spot on! I think answering these questions and giving this look at Alonso the man, is really cool. It may be a brilliant move, but it also humanizes Alonso, which, in light of his history, is a very good thing.

          Comparing Massa and Grosjean is a great example. Who in 2009 would have ever thought Grosjean could do the things he has done, whilst Massa could suffer such poor results after being at the top. Driver’s careers ebb and flow greatly, it’s neat to see Alonso highlighting that and sharing his thoughts and feelings on his relationships to his team mates and crew.

      1. Plus, all thing being considered, even as poor as Massa’s been the last few years, how much of that is really due to him being poor and not Alonso simply being outstanding?

        And on top of that, how much of Massa’s drop in performance has been his own fault? Almost zero percent, I believe.

      2. +1. I also agree. Another thing to take on cout is that those comments came from his new facebook/twiter/web page…The question came from a fan…and to my understanding he is the one preparing the answers without any outside help…
        I just think the car this year is a piece of cra___…impossible to drive.
        I wander how many drivers in the actual F1 grid would had perform better than Massa in this year races with the same car….? (I guess I’ll never know!!

    16. COTD; Congratulations, a sensible easy to achieve solution that can be done without faulting Pirelli, just get rid of the mandatory pitstop, allow the teams to decide which of the 2 selected compounds to use and organise qualifying so that they don’t have to use the tyre they qualify on and let the harder compound last more than half distance without falling of the cliff.

    17. fernando says he likes his teammate
      response: “what a jerk!”

      fernando say he doesn’t like his teammate
      response: “what a jerk!”

      1. Hahahaa! Exactly! +1

        1. He should learn from Lotus. Four races in, Lotus teammates barely mentioned each other.

          I can’t recall anything before after the performance in Bahrain.

          Those guys are focused.

    18. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA good one Nando, good one! ; )
      No seriously though, I think it was a very nice comment on Massa.
      Its the funny thing about Alonso, sometimes he is a total *ss, and sometimes he is the exact opposite.

    19. I think Massa’s performance has dipped since his accident in 2008, but the main reason he seems to be under performing is because Alonso is probably the best driver on the grid right now.

      1. I was about to rage about people being in denial, but then I saw “probably the best driver” and I calmed down :)

        It’s going to be a very good year, this years best driver(WC) will have work cut out for him and I wont be surprised there are going to be a few contenders for that award.

        I doubt this is going to be a good year for Ferrari, but just imagining that they will join in the fight, this is going to be crazy with so many car having a chance to win World Championship.

    20. davey (@djdaveyp87)
      5th May 2012, 13:08

      Felipe Massa is one of the best drivers in the world. All F1 drivers are. It takes a huge amount of talent and skill to drive on of those cars within 2 seconds of the best. He’s just not performing to the level expected and hasn’t been since Ferrari knocked the wind out of him at Hockenheim. I actually think he would fare pretty well at another team.

      There is a lesson here, don’t ever drive for Ferrari unless you are a Michael Schumacher or a Fernando Alonso. What kind of racing driver would want to be a number 2 driver apart from at the start of their career. In all honesty, I think Felipe is there for the money.

    21. Massa is an outstanding driver in a competative car. However, he struggles with a demanding car, such as this years car. That is the difference between him and the Alonsos and Hamiltons of the sport.

    22. The issue with Massa is that post Schumacher era I it was expected of him to take on the number 1 mantle. With Kimi taking Schumi’s spot in 2007, it was expected that Massa would immediately have the upper hand. So it was somewhat embarrassing for Massa that Kimi won the WDC in his first year with Ferrari. 2008 was his most successful year, almost clinching the title. With his accident in 2009 he took a little time to get back up into the top class, but by that time Alonso had reached the team and was settling in quite well – with almost a WDC in 2010. From then onwards there has been a Red Bull domination and Ferrari’s car was generally the 3rd fastest – in other words in the top 6. Alonso is a far more capable driver than Massa and hence has made Massa look bad and the dismal Ferrari of the past 2 years look impressive. Another issue with Massa was his over defensive driving style that has caused him several incidents with Hamilton last year. That sort of publicity has not been good for both drivers but Hamilton fairing better with at least wins under his belt when he got his act to gether. Massa has not had a level of luck that other drivers have had, but at the same time, perhaps he should be looking at another team to fightout for the number 1 role as it is a ver sizable mountain to climb at Ferrari. And we know how Ferrari treats their number 1 drivers…. “Fernando is faster…”…

      1. With Kimi taking Schumi’s spot in 2007, it was expected that Massa would immediately have the upper hand. So it was somewhat embarrassing for Massa that Kimi won the WDC in his first year with Ferrari.

        I don’t think so. Ferrari knew that they wanted an established top driver to replace Michael Schumacher and go with the ever improving Felipe at the time. So it isn’t embarrassing for Massa that Kimi won the title after a close four way contest.

        1. With the amount of money they paid to Kimi, I don’t think they were looking at Massa as a nr1 driver.

          1. Also by 2007, Kimi got close to win two championships already.

            2005 is hands down his, there is something with Finns and McLarens reliability.
            2003 that was close.

    23. Now, I’m no expert on demo tyres, but shouldn’t Sauber have been using them for the track guide? They may well be using them, but they look like softs to me.

      Can anyone elaborate?

    24. Alonso must be getting worried that Ferrari are about to replace Massa with a quicker driver. Say someone like a Hamilton, Vettel or Button who would make life at Ferrari alot more difficult for Fernanado.

      Ferrari are a joke Luca Di Montezemolo keeps going on and on about a third car when Ferrari have been running a one car team for years now.

      1. kenneth Ntulume
        7th May 2012, 14:47

        hahahaahaha……@ going on with a third car yet……………….

    25. Matt (@agentmulder)
      6th May 2012, 5:47

      I’m glad to see that, through it all, Alonso has still retained his sense of humor.

    26. Past performances doesn’t necessarily indicate present form. Who in their right minds would have thought schumacher would be beaten by Rosberg few years back ?

      Massa was one of the best F1 drivers in 2007 or 2008.
      He is nowhere one of the best F1 drivers in the current F1 grid. Even assuming Red Bull, Mclaren, Lotus and Mercedes are faster than ferrari at the moment , the Saubers, Williams and Force India lets say are about same pace as Ferrari. Is massa beating kobayashi, perez, di resta or senna ? So i would easily rate all of them above massa as of today.

      Alonso is good no doubt but hamilton matched him in his first year and fisichella beat alonso in about 1/3 races in the 2 years together and trulli earlier had matched alonso in 2004. So yes i believe alonso can be beaten in races though over a championship it might be difficult. So i don’t get the justification that just because alonso is massa’s teammate the latter is being beaten soundly.

      1. @baluundertaker

        Past performances doesn’t necessarily indicate present form. Who in their right minds would have thought schumacher would be beaten by Rosberg few years back ?

        Crazily enough, I did.

        “For me, he has nothing else to prove. Why go back and take the risk of being beaten week in and week out by a Nico Rosberg, never mind a Lewis Hamilton?”


        Is massa beating kobayashi, perez, di resta or senna ? So i would easily rate all of them above massa as of today.

        I’d still rate Massa over Senna. It’s marginal in the cases of Kobayashi and di Resta, but I’d give Massa the benefit of the doubt. But I’d rate Perez over Massa now (thanks to Malaysia)… and really, Perez is the only guy that really matters here, isn’t he?

        Alonso is good no doubt but hamilton matched him in his first year and fisichella beat alonso in about 1/3 races in the 2 years together and trulli earlier had matched alonso in 2004. So yes i believe alonso can be beaten in races though over a championship it might be difficult. So i don’t get the justification that just because alonso is massa’s teammate the latter is being beaten soundly.

        You’d have to say that Hamilton beat Alonso because Alonso never really felt at home at McLaren. I’m not saying the team was favoring Lewis (consciously or not), but what can’t be disputed is that McLaren didn’t LOVE Alonso the way Alonso wants to be loved (by Renault then and Ferrari now). And that took Alonso off his game.

        As for the rest… Fisi beat Alonso very rarely. In the two years they were together, I only recall four races where Fisi beat Alonso (AUS 2005; MAL, USA, and GER 2006). Out of something like 37 races, that’s barely 10 percent. Trulli matched Alonso, that is true, but that was before he won the title, and you’d have to say becoming a World Champion is a game-changer for anyone’s morale (most recent example being Jenson Button).

        1. @journeyer

          Amazing forethought about schumi’s struggles in 2009 !!

          Regarding alonso vs fisichella i admit i didn’t look at the tables before coming up with the ratio. But after checking the results its something like 6 out of 37 races . So yes little under 20% and i was off by some percent.

          I prefer not to take comfort factor of a driver within a team(though i admit it is a factor) to judge a driver as it then becomes almost impossible to judge anyone. If Alonso couldn’t beat hamilton because Mclaren wasn’t very cosy with Alonso then we could say the same for all of Alonso’s opponents in Renault and Ferrari right ? May be fisichella could have beaten alonso if both were in mclaren then ? I am not suggesting he would but thats why i don’t like such arguments. It is easier to make an argument based on results just like how you clearly disproved my stats on fisi beating alonso ..

    27. Alonso is just diverting the attention from last Grand Prix, were Massa was stuck behind him and was forced to finish behind him.

      I wish we got to hear: “Fillipe is faster than you”

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