Should Massa stay at Ferrari? (Poll)

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

These are tough times for Felipe Massa.

His return from injury this year has seen him more often than not struggling for pace compared to new team mate Fernando Alonso. And he’s already suffered a racing driver’s ultimate indignity – being told to get out of his team mate’s way.

He signed a fresh two-year deal with the Scuderia earlier this year. But can he really stand another two years like this one?


It’s hard to make a case for any driver leaving a top team when there are so few race-winning seats available in Formula 1.

Massa only likely alternative might be at Renault alongside Robert Kubica – so that could just be a case of exchanging one devastatingly fast team mate for another.

He should stay put and hope next year’s change to Pirelli tyres works in his favour – much like Schumacher is. And he should keep in mind how the switch from Michelin to Bridgestone unsettled Alonso in 2007.


Massa is no stranger to having a world champion as a team mate. Before Alonso showed up his last three team mates were Jacques Villeneuve, Michael Schumacher and Kimi R??ikk??nen.

Villeneuve gave him little trouble, Schumacher provided valuable learning opportunities and he and R??ikk??nen were well-matched in their two-and-a-half years together. But Alonso has beaten him on pace and relegated him to a supporting role.

Massa’s situation now looks a lot like Jarno Trull’si in 2004. It’s time to do what Trulli did: find a new home and let someone else help Alonso win his championships.

I say

Some say that after his awful crash last year Massa will never be the same driver again and his performances this year are evidence of that. Only he can know that for sure.

My interest in this matter is entirely selfish – I want to see the top seats in F1 occupied by drivers who are going to fight to win races. Looking at Massa’s performance at Suzuka and Hockenheim this year, I’m not convinced that’s the case.

In the run-up to Suzuka Massa denied he had made a comment about not wanting to become a new Rubens Barrichello. He may not have said it, but I suspect that’s exactly what will happen to him if he stays at Ferrari.

You say

Do you think Massa should stay at Ferrari? Why? And what do his supporters think? Cast your vote and have your say below.

Should Massa stay at Ferrari?

  • Yes (39%)
  • No (61%)

Total Voters: 3,209

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289 comments on “Should Massa stay at Ferrari? (Poll)”

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  1. I am an anti Alonso and anti Ferrari person, but I like Massa as a driver and if Ferrari were to win a race I would like it to be with Massa.

    With that established I would hate to see Massa become a ‘Rubens’ too Alonso, and I personally don’t believe he has the skill to match Alonso so I would like him to move to a different team were he still is able to compete for podiums and not be smashed by his team mate (kubica and Renault is then not such a good idea) so maybe Williams pairing alongside the Hulk.

    1. I forgot to mention that I remember reading somewhere Sam Michaels quoted something along the lines of “Next years car will be completely different to the FW32”, so maybe that could be Massa’s big break?

      1. And Nico Hulkenberg might loose his seat obviously so Williams could be a ex-ferrari 2nd drivers team :D

        1. Maybe Williams would keep the Hulk in a tester role instead if they could get Massa.
          Rubens might help him have the best chance at managing the new tyres well with his setup skills and Massa would have a shot at taking the next Williams win.

          Does not sound too bad. An exchange with Webber might be a nice one if/when Webber falls out with RBR management for rather pushing to keep Vettel on his tail instead of giving him the best shot at the WDC this year.

          1. “Maybe Williams would keep the Hulk in a tester role instead if they could get Massa.”

            That would be a complete waste of Hulkenberg’s talents though due to the lack of testing. Williams also need cash apparently so if they get shot of him it should be for money. Hulkenberg is the future.

            I think Massa’s best chance at Williams would be if Rubens left but Williams love him and he loves F1 still. Nice idea though.

    2. I think Force India could be a great seat for him, the team have the money and drive to do ‘the Red Bull’, and at the moment are struggling to find that next step to take them to fighting for wins and podiums on a regular basis and a driver with Massa’s experience could be a brilliant match.

      I would love to see him in a Williams but its been confirmed that Rubens is there next season and its Hulk’s seat that is possibly up for grabs and I can’t see Williams taking two expensive older drivers.

      1. Not sure about that, I get the feeling Force India is on the decline. They’ve lost quite a lot of key personnel and don’t seem to be great at developing the car based on this year’s trend line.

        I wouldn’t be surprised if Lotus and maybe Sauber as well jumps ahead of them next year

    3. Agree 100%. I don’t think Massa has *any* chance now, if he ever had (which I doubt), of competing on a level playing field with Alonso. I agree his pace has let him down this year, and this may well have to do with last year’s crash, but he has shown an ability to grow and fight back over his career. But he won’t get the chance at Ferrari.

      In return (revenge!) I want to see Alonso against Kubica. I mean, badly want to see! It’d be Ham v. Alonso again, only with Kubica even less inclined to cede ground to Alonso’s politicking in the garage and just as determined to beat him on track. So has Alonso the cojones to take on that challenge?

      1. Except that Alonso and Kubica are supposedly good friends off the track, which would make the dynamic very different to Alonso-Hamilton or Alonso-Massa. It would be great to see if that friendship could endure the inevitable battles that would take place within the team.

      2. Kubica is way overated. Heidfeld had his number when they raced together and Heidfeld is an also run. Petrov makes him look way better than he really is. On Massa, you must remember that he had no trouble to outpace Kimi — during the time they raced together he won more races and scored more points than the Finn. It is a bad year for him, but perhaps we could hold our judgement till the end of 2011? I never understood the sort of negative reaction that Massa has among some F1 fans. Is he a bad driver? Well, Hamilton won his 2008 championship over him by a single point that he got in the last curve of the last race of the season in a much more reliable car. If Hamilton is a good driver, Massa cannot be that bad.

        1. You can’t consider the Heidfeld issue. Kubica would’ve been way ahead of Nick in 2009 if he hadn’t had technical issues.

        2. Really I don’t see how you compare Kubica to Heidfeld? But no place to develop more on this.
          However what Kubica did in BMW – worked hard and won strong position in german team – is exactly opposite to Massa – he took it easy until Alonso’s performance relegated him to merely a helper.

        3. Antifia, I certainly agree Massa is a good driver, he indeed came as close as possible to winning the WDC in 2008 and putting aside the final race, lost partly because of Ferrari errors during the season. But cam he compete viably at Ferrari now? As for Kubica, I don’t see him as way overrated, at all. There’s always a small queue for ‘fastest driver,’ but the three current drivers who really push to the limit and beyond are, I’d say, Hamilton, Alonso and Kubica. That’s why any of them in a team pairing would be (was) fascinating and potentially explosive.

          1. 2008 lost because of Ferrari errors? how about his spin off at Sepang & Australia? The only reason he was even close to Kimi was because he had his entire entourage at every race and race engineer rob smedley giving him Kimis information and the Ferrari garage backing him with upgrades and strategy(always qualifed light & last). Anytime, Kimi had better qualifying he owned Massa in 2008. Massa should never have been in a ferrari.

        4. I completely agree with you on Kubica. The only semi-decent team-mate he had for any sustained period of time beat him more often than not.

    4. felipe massa fan
      17th October 2010, 17:24

      massa is a good driver but the only reason he is slower than alonzo is because of the tyres.

      and massa is a team player and has only retired from one gp this season.

      massa WDC 2011
      FERRARI WCC 2011

      1. Sorry I didn’t realize that Massa was the only driver in F1 to be given the slowest tyres in the paddock…………….

        You should help him come up with a better excuse!!! It will help him when he cries…………

        1. Nah, Schumacher’s had them all year as well!

      2. I like him too, but I share a view of those who say he underperforms, compared to the potential of the car he drives.
        I don’t know if for him it is time to consider to leave – next season could turn better for him and he could prove to be equal to Alonso.
        For me he doesn’t perform well enough having such a car. He is just a few points ahead of Rosberg and Kubica who had much more troubles to cope with the entire season and were also unfairly unlucky several times.

    5. ‘It’s hard to make a case for any driver leaving a top team when there are so few race-winning seats available in Formula 1’.

      It’s not so hard when Massa isn’t allowed to win; and otherwise isn’t quick enough with Alonso in the sister car!

      Massa is now Alonso’s poodle. Quite apart from Massa’s justification, that moving over once will forestall it ever happening again, moving over has set a precedent which Ferrari is bound to follow.

      That’s why Massa should leave Ferrari. And Ferrari should get rid of him because he’s too far behind Alonso’s pace to either help him very often or score good points for the WCC. A simple decision for all concerned.

      Re Kirby, Kubica ‘looks’ very good and makes few mistakes because he has a good, much underrated car, and a bad, pay-driver team-mate. This equates to seemingly good results with a pressure free enviromnment.

      But this is the same Kubica who was very often beaten by ”Quick’ Nick’ Heidfeld. To equate Kubica with Hamilton or Alonso, etc., therefore, as Mark Hughes has for the BBC, is unjustifiable.

  2. Yes but only because he has more of a chance at winning the WDC at Ferrari then Renault which as Keith says is his only other option for a competitive drive.

    1. I had to say yes, and I agree with you.

      Unfortunately his best chance at winning the WDC is probably with Ferrari… Maybe he can out stay Alonso?
      Ferrari is a powerful team, and if things go his way next year, things just might pan out in his favour…

      1. I reckon he needs to tough it out for one more year and see how he works with the new tyres & car. If 2011 goes the same way as this year, he’ll have little option but to get out.

        But it’s reckless to leave now just because he’s struggled with the Bridgestone hards pre-Hockenheim and his head’s dropped a little post-Hockenheim. I reckon he still has it in him to fight for another championship, although I wouldn’t be surprised if 2008 turned out to ultimately be his best opportunity.

  3. I like Felipe so much, but it has to be said that he’s become a second league driver, certainly not on par with likes of Alonso, Hamilton, Vettel or Kubica.

    Regarding possible Renault seat – don’t forget that somebody will have to go to Ferrari, so theoretically if Scuderia wants to have too competitive drivers, they may opt for Massa-Kubica exchange. No “devastatingly fast team mate” left in Renault with that scenario.

    1. *two instead of too ;)

    2. Unfortunately the Scuderia’s track record has never suggested that they like having two competitive drivers. So I don’t see a Massa-Kubica exchange ever happening, even if Kubica becomes completely disillusioned with Renault in the next 3 races.

      1. I think it is quite possible, because otherwise I have some diffculty to understand why Felipe managed to stay in that team for so long. Or maybe becasue they knew he is tolerant when driving alongside someone of champion’s ambitions?

  4. Tough question. On the one hand I would like to see more of him (he’s very quiet out there) and perhaps we would see more of him at Renault.

    But then again who knows what next year will bring. Alonso has clearly out-performed him this year but is this a result of missing half of last season and perhaps missing out on some pre-season development for 2010?

    If I was him i’d give it another year at would seem fairer to base your future on that.

    1. Did you read the interview with Sid Watkins in this month’s F1 Racing?

      Watkins thinks it takes two years to recover from a significant brain injury – he thinks Massa came back too quickly. By this standard, I think Massa needs to stick it out and see what happens next season.

      1. Massa had to come back. Any more time lost and he’d have been too slow in his comeback (not to mention he might not have a seat to come back to). If this slight loss of pace is down to his brain injury recuperation, then it was probably the better decision to tough it now and be back at 100% next year.

        1. Agreed – he had to come back. And I’m just looking forward to seeing how he performs next year.

          Could any driver could beat an on-form Alonso using the same equipment?

          1. Hamilton did.

            I think Massa could get much closer to Alonso, possibly ahead depending on Alonso’s error count, but it all depends on how he goes in qualifying, that’s what’s let him down this year the most.

          2. But did Hamilton beat an on-form Alonso?

            He certainly beat Alonso in 2007, albeit only on countback with equal points, but I’m not sure Alonso was at the very top of his game all year. ’07 was the first year of the Bridgestone control tyres, and Alonso, Raikkonen and Kubica (all used to Michelin’s very different tyre) struggled to adapt their driving styles. By contrast, Hamilton struggled with Michelins in testing (destroying a McLaren in a major testing shunt) and was significantly slower than Alonso but felt much more at home once the control Bridgestones became available.

            The season may have panned out very differently had Michelin remained in the sport for another year. The result may not have been much different, as the best drivers always adapt sooner or later. But I don’t think it’s right to say Alonso was fully “in the zone” for at least the first half of the season.

          3. Well, any argument over Alonso’s form is nullified by the fact that Hamilton was a rookie.

          4. A rookie beating the reigning double world champion.

          5. Not really – the point was whether or not Alonso was at the top of his game when he was beaten by the narrowest of margins in ’07.

            The fact that Hamilton was a rookie at the time is irrelevant.

          6. Actually it is relevant, because the fact that Lewis was a rookie suggests that he wasn’t at the top of his game. There’s no point saying “well Alonso wasn’t on form on 07 so that’s why Lewis beat him” and then brush off the claim that Lewis wasn’t as good then as he is now.

          7. yeah but has lewis ever driven as well as those first 10 races. in terms of speed and consistency?

            No is the only answer. that was lewis peak so far.

            and fernando lowest. and they finished equal.

          8. They finished equal because Hamilton was nowhere near as consistent in the second half of the season. And I’d say that throughout 2007 Alonso was driving better than say, 2010 until Monza. So he certainly wasn’t at his worst, not when he was the double reigning champ.

          9. yeah but it was certainly lewis peak season. and not alonso’s. that was the question and thats the answer. credit to him for taking on a double champ and nearly beating him and taking the title. but has he ever been as good since? he looked like he had return to that level at the start of season but since mid way has been pretty iffy.

            lewis has now made more mistakes this seasons than fernando. alonso errors were china, monaco practice(tho99% that would not of damaged a chassis) and silverstone. and mis timing spa/malaysia qualy. Melbourne was buttons fault. alonso never changed his line and had michael on the left. button wasnt even alongside and braked along the inside in wet. racing incident but buttons error. that was michael and fernando’s corner 100%

            lets not forget lewis also clipped other drivers on first laps at valencia and silverstone. but got away with it as was the peoples wheels he hit. and of course he has been lucky to escape pens at china and malayasia where he got warnings where others later in season had penalties. unsafe pit release in canada, lucky boy but great save in spa, and of course the mistakes recently. so he is lucky to have the points that he does

            he is great, but what made him so so good in 07 was he ability to know when to back off and get the points and more importantly podiums. and since the day he slid off at china he has never found that consistency again. he may, fernando seemed to have lost it early doors this season. but now seems back to 05-06 form.

          10. The only way Hamilton could keep up with Alonso was because of uncle/dad Ron ;)
            He’s with the team for 10 years now, he’s British driving for a British team. Any other driver, regardsless of being a champion, will always be second to him at McLaren.

          11. That’s obviously not the case or they wouldn’t have let Button take points off him in China, would they? Button himself has said he would quit if he was forced into a number two role so that’s clearly not what is going on there.

          12. @ Keith

            Keith, logic will eventually catch up with you. If Button’s remark

            “Button himself has said he would quit if he was forced into a number two role so that’s clearly not what is going on there.”

            is the ultimate evidence of no #1 and # 2 drivers at McLaren, then the comment from Massa that he is not a second Barrichelo puts an end to the story. There is no #1 and # at Ferrari.

            Unless you put a different value on Jensons and Felipe’s word for whatever reason (nationality, hair colour, height, you name it), that I do not think it is the case, isn’t it?

          13. @Bren- it’s pretty clear that he’s been “iffy” because Mclaren have fallen behind in the development race compared to the other big two teams.

            Slapping a wall at Monaco in Saturday Practice will almost always cause damage that can’t be repaired within the couple of hours before qualifying. You also forgot the Fuji 07 style crash Alonso had when he was nowhere in Spa’s race, and his poor handling of backmarkers which got the Mclarens to mug him in Canada.

            @Astonished- For this season at least, there is a number 1 and 2 driver at Ferrari. Massa’s only saying that to make himself feel better.

            @Kimster- No, just no.

          14. @ David A

            I guess you know Jenson personally so well that you are sure that he is not “only saying that to make himself feel better.” as well..

            Otherwise I think we have different standards for different people.

            I, personally, give very little value to what the drivers say to the press, but, apparently it was not the case for Keith. At least regargding Jenson.

          15. Look at the championship table. Then you’ll see that Jenson has the results and to back up his words.

          16. @David

            If the worth of a driver’s word is how much backed up by the point table they are, then the most trustworthy is Mark “not bad for a #2 driver” Weber, Closely followed by Alonso, Vettel, Hamilton and then Button.

            I doubt that you would respect more what Fernando “SuperEgo” Alonso says over Lewis (now that I know that you are his fan and not Buttons’)…

          17. I don’t have to be a Hamilton fan to appreciate that he defeated Alonso as a newbie in 2007.

            When you’re pointing out that you’re not a number 2 driver, you’ve got to back it up with your actions.

            Button, by being Mr. Consistent, is driving enough like a number 1 driver to back up his actions.

            Webber, who was kidding when he said “not bad for a #2 driver” has clearly demonstrated with his 4 wins that he can be a #1 driver this year.

            Massa on the other hand says he isn’t a #2, but definately drove like one in Suzuka. Alonso is just too good for him.

        2. He couldn’t win really. He must have seen this coming to be fair..but I still feel for him!

      2. That’s interesting Cari. That might be a good background to have a go at it next year with better condition and brand new Pirellis to show he car really do it again after 2008.

        1. I’d definitely recommend picking up a copy. If only for the Senna quotes. Well worth a read.

      3. Hakkinen was doing just fine though.

    2. same goes for JV his best season was his rookie one. tho he won title in 97, he made many more errors in it.

      sometimes it goes like that. actually quite often. a rookie is free from pressure and expectation. sadly for lewis when pressure comes on he makes errors. 07, 08 and now. its his one and only weakness.

      where as fernando gets stronger under pressure. 05(imola!) turkey(06), monza(07), singapore(10). alonso weakness is making errors with not much pressure. like china this year.

      1. I will reply to some general comments relating to Lewis and Alonso.

        Allegation 1: Lewis’s first year was his best.

        I don’t think that Lewis’s first year was clearly his best year. It was astonishing, yes: to beat his team-mate qua reigning double world champion. Lewis also made some stellar overtaking manoeuvres; and showed wet-weather prowess. He was just a rookie. In 2008, once more, Lewis had the second best car. But this time he became WDC. Despite the fact that the FIA were seemingly out to get him, giving him more penalties in one year than had been given to any other driver in F1 history. Despite the fact that he was racing both Ferrari drivers who were teaming up on him, swapping positions, playing tactics, etc. Despite the fact that his team-mate was too slow to help him. He once again made many masterful overtaking manoeuvres. He also became the first driver since Senna to win a wet race by over a minute (not even Schumi managed this). Lewis also coped with the most extreme pressure to win the world championship on the last corner of the last lap of the last race. So, as good as beating Alonso was, perhaps Lewis was even better in 08? Or what about 09? When he achieving some great results in one of the worst cars McLaren have probably ever produced. This was the year he really matured a lot. Or what about ’10, where until Monza Lewis hadn’t made a single mistake all year; in contrast to Alonso, who had made pretty much one a race till then. In short, it’s very difficult to say which was Lewis’s best year: they’re all so good.

        Allegation 2: Fernando gets stronger under pressure!

        Let’s not forget that Alonso first left Renault because he claimed that the team didn’t want him to win the championship and that Fisi wasn’t helping him enough! Alonso then went to McLaren and couldn’t beat Lewis and so demanded no: 1 status by blackmailing the team with the Ferrari data scandal! This is a ridiculous allegation. Especially when Alonso has admitted to his having ‘made many mistakes this year [2010]’. Let’s recap a few: in Bahrain he was out-qualified by the lowly Massa; in Australia he collided with Button; in Malaysia he didn’t overrule the team and thus didn’t set a time early in qualifying before the much anticipated rain fell (McLaren boys guilty here also); in China he jumped the start; in Monaco he crashed in practice and couldn’t qualify; in Valencia he was ‘mugged’ by Kobayashi; etc. Be fair, guys. Alonso has made a huge amount of mistakes this year; mistakes that he attributes to pressure. In contrast, Lewis has made only one real mistake: hitting Massa. Otherwise, he’s been flawless; his car, hopeless.

        Allegation 3: 2007 was not a genuine assessment of Alonso’s talent!?

        It’s said that Alonso found it really difficult to adapt to the new rubber and this is one of the key reasons that Lewis was right with him. Well, as the reigning double-world champion, you should be able to adapt quickly to new circumstances. If you can’t, that can only be a negative in itself. Besides, Lewis had to adapt to the new rubber as well! In fact, Lewis wasn’t familiar with the tyres; an F1 car in general; the various demands of F1 racing; most of the tracks; even the steering wheel settings! Alonso had no such disadvantages. Yet Lewis was right with Alonso from the very first race: even passing him into the first corner before finishing a very respectable 11 seconds back. By the end of the season, Lewis had proven himself to be a better overtaker and wet weather driver; crucially, he finished ahead of Alonso in the WDC. Another objection Alonso fans raise is that their man fell out with Ron. Well, that only happened around Hungary, despite rifts opening in Monaco when McLaren favoured Alonso over Lewis. And, during that first part of the season, Lewis was right with, if not ahead of, Alonso. Moreover, once more, Alonso’s rift with Ron can only be viewed as a negative in itself. For Alonso fell out with Ron by blackmailing the McLaren team after Alonso couldn’t beat Hamilton on the track! That Alonso did this is a further mark against him as a man and a driver. One final point. Look how much rookies improve from their first years. Lewis will have improved considerably, in various different ways, from 2007. Alonso won’t have improved much, if at all. Lewis is some way of his peak! Alonso is probably past his peak now.

        1. Anything Lewis has done wrong or Fernando right? Even by coincidence?

          Im accounting terms “The balance doesn’t balance”, but it is always refreshing to observe a passionate fan.

  5. I like Massa, and I trully dislike Alonso. Even in the Schumacher days, Massa had a respect in that team, and he could give everything he could, however, since the accident’s return, I’m sure he feels like he’s been stabbed in the back.

    And the best thing you can do when you feel that way is leaving.

    1. Great comment aa and I agree with completely, except that I think Massa should stay. Yes he has had an uncompetitive year, yes Alonso has bullied him around, yes next year seems daunting. But where else is there to go. Any true racer with true courage would stick it out another year in a team where they could possibly fight for wins and the championship, rather than run away to a smaller team where they might sneak a podium or two, like a little girl. That’s what Alonso did when he ran back to Renault. I also don’t understand all the bashing Massa receives. No he isn’t a Hamilton of Alonso, but they are the only drivers on the grid I truly rate higher in terms of skill. Would we be saying anything about Webber, Vettel, Button if they hadn’t been blessed with massively superior cars? Massa has had wins in 3 different seasons and none of his cars had the advantages the RB5, RB6 of BGP-001 had over their competition. Maybe Massa doesn’t have that ruthless fire needed to be champion, but with the way he had dominated and risen to the challenges infront of his home crowd, his dignity in defeat, and his return from a near fatal collision are all things we can admire him for. Is he as good as Alonso, Hamilton, Button, Schumacher, Kubica, Vettel, Webber? I don’t know, but one a dozen or so occasions he has beaten them all. And how many people can say that?

  6. Keith, you mentioned that Alonso struggled with the switch from Michelin to Bridgestone tyres in 2007, and that should give Felipe to level the playing turf a little. I don’t remember that happenning in 2007, since he was on the ball from the 1st race onwards.

    From Felipe’s point of view, he should stay at Ferrari, and take the chance to redeem himself. I really do not think he will get a top drive if he leaves Ferrari, especially with the season the lack lustre season he has had. I think if he can match Alonso next season, Ferrari will give him a fair shot at the title. However, I just cannot see Massa consistently matching his teammate.

    From Ferrari’s point of view, if Felipe doesn’t improve by much next season, they can kiss another WCC good bye. But if he improves slightly they should hang on to him.

    1. He also didn’t like McLaren’s brakes, but I think too much can be made of this. In the races he lost out to Ferrari McLaren were just slower. In the races he lost out to Hamilton there were at times reasons beyond mechanical disadvantage (erratic driving in Canada and Hungary, not to mention an emotionally-driven retaliation to Hamilton’s actions in the former). Of course, you would then have to argue that it was good enough for McLaren to be superior in the wet (and thus giving him the win at the Nurburgring) but somehow unfair he liked the tyres and brakes less than Hamilton.

      Also, he and Pedro collaborated together in the later tests of the season to freeze Hamilton getting the maximum out of the new upgrades (ever wonder why he suddenly shot ahead of Hamilton in pace at Spa and Monza? It wasn’t just getting his way with the brakes).

      Together, the “Alonso should have been champion because he was unfairly disadvantaged” argument seems a little null. There were other reasons he didn’t win the championship that year and a few that put him back into contention. But that’s not to say tyres are an irrelevant issue. If he dislikes the Pirelli tyres and Massa likes them, all else being equal they could be the deciding factor between them.

      1. Alonso also took some very strange decisions on set-up: so that Lewis, who often copied him quite a bit due to Lewis’s almost complete inexperience, would struggle relatively more than Alonso. Here, I’m thinking about races such as Silverstone. It was just another example of Alonso’s tactics to try and beat an inherently faster driver: Lewis.

  7. He should stay at least for 2011. Hopefully the team will give him the chance to fight for wins again, even against Alonso. If not it will be time to call it a day and go to another team, no matter how much it was his dream driving for Ferrari.
    Right now it looks like Felipe has formally agreed to help Alonso, but it looks like he has zero interest in actually doing so. That’s understandable, we all now about past ‘incidents’ (Germany 2007) between the two.

    1. felipe massa fan
      18th October 2010, 9:13

      he’s got a contract until the end of 2012!!!
      Hes been there since 2006 he isnt leaving

      why is everyone so harsh about him you have to remember that in 2008 he only lost the wdc by one point due to his bad luck and hamiltons last corner of the season good luck.
      he is also a really good team player and it has been tough this season.
      but he hasnt been winning or getting that many podiums because ferrari didnt develop the car at the start and they were the 3rd/4th best eam

      and who would replace him? fisichella
      or kubica

      1. I agree, Xanathos. I really do feel sorry for him though, because I doubt other teams are looking at him as a desirable asset at the moment unfortunately. But I really like Felipe, and I don’t want him to slip under the radar of prospective recruitment opportunities, especially considering how close he came to taking the title in 2008. So I’d like to see him do at least another year at Ferrari – where he will hopefully improve further. I think we can only really judge his performances at this time next year, because he has basically had to learn all over again after a lengthy absence.

        I seem to remember a certain period at the end of 2002 where Felipe had all but disappeared and accepted he was only going to be a test driver for Ferrari. Then he returned to Sauber, where I don’t think he made much more of an impression (apart from maybe Canada ’05). It was when he joined Ferrari we saw him mature and become the driver he was before his crash. My point is that it took such a long time to develop Felipe as a championship contender, so I don’t think one year will be enough for him to show his true pace. I feel the same with Michael Schumacher, and expect dramatically improved results if Mercedes can provide him with the machinery.

        So, at the end of 2011, if a similar article appears on here, I will vote no – he should find himself a team that values both drivers equally, because I don’t believe anyone would have enjoyed the way he was treated this year. This is of course if he hasn’t improved to the point at which he is able to fight with Alonso (contract permitting, of course) for regular wins, because I refuse to believe we have seen the best of Felipe Massa and that he is on his way out of the sport.

        By the way; I voted yes – he should stay at Ferrari, but I don’t want him to stay there if the same thing happens next year. Come on Felipe! :)

  8. So hard to choose.

    Ferrari have been a disgrace to Massa. But Massa knew what he was getting into; if you are a Ferrari driver, you have to roll over for the good of the team. Never mind he was shown love and affection and then had a win taken away on an important anniversary, through trickery by his own team to engineer the situation that triggered the team orders – if you go to Ferrari you know the #1 priority is having a Ferrari driver be champion and damn all else. Feelings hurt? Then leave. I feel incredibly sorry for Massa but he knew if anyone was going to do that to him, it would have been Ferrari. I naively didn’t, but they have and will do it again if needs be. Morality does not exist in F1 and if it did and Massa held any store by it, Ferrari would only be the strangest choice amongst the top teams who have all done dodgy stuff in the recent past. So it’s no reason for him to leave.

    Where would he go? Ferrari itself provides Massa’s best opportunity to show this year was a one-off and he can compete with Alonso. And if things go well it will be Alonso moving over for him instead. Even Schumacher had to support Irvine for the championship in 1999 – if Alonso thinks any differently he’d better hope the situation never arises.

    Massa should only leave if a faster car or one more suiting to his style is open. But that goes for every F1 driver.

    1. I couldn’t have said it better Icthyes!

  9. massa days are gone in ferrari

  10. No. Massa is a talented driver who doesn’t serve to be strong-armed into doing whatever Ferrari wants.

    1. Probably the best comment on this whole article. Agree fully!

  11. I think he should leave because ever since the accident he and Ferrari have changed. When Ferrari announced they would give him another contract for 2010 while he was recovering, it felt like it was just because they felt sorry to let him go while recovering and didn’t want the press to think they let mass a go because of the uncertainty of the accident

  12. lets not forget that Massa was hired to be a support driver. That is just how Ferrari work. The last they they want is their drivers competing against each other (and for logical reasons).

    Now you might think this is bad and so so. But what do you know? Its their tradition and I don’t think anyone has the right to tell them otherwise.

  13. my point of view here is “quitting ferrari is accepting defeat”

    and i dont like that idea too much.

    He needs to stay and prove his detractors wrong..

    he needs a year to redeem himself…he matched raikkonnen last year and given the switch to pirelli next year ..he has a good chance to redeem i dont think any other team will give him a shot at the WDC or winning races for that matter..

    1. Redeeming himself is not in Ferrari’s intrest. Supporting Alonso is, so, if he stay he does so with the full understanding that he can only support Alonso.

      1. it should not be taken for granted that ferrari will only support alonso.

        remember 2007 massa had to play second fiddle to kimi

        and kimi was asked to support massa the year later..

        If only Massa can manage to get ahead of alonso towards the end of the season..Alonso will be asked to do what massa is doing now..and therein lies massa’s redemption.

        1. To see Alonso’s face when told to pull over!

          1. Yes..that would be a sight to savour indeed..


          2. Alonso, like all other top drivers, would most certainly ignore said ‘instruction’. Second rate drivers, however…

  14. Kubica joining Ferrari is just a matter of time, so if Massa wants to have a future in F1, he’s got to stay in Ferrari at least one more year and during this time find a new home. Of course he is slipping to the role of next Barrichello, but I think that was obvious to happen since Alonso joined the team.

    1. Kubica will never accept being No 2 so he will never go to Ferrari as long as Alonso is there.

      1. Nonsense. A top driver’s seat for Robert Kubica is long overdue, and I’m sure he won’t hesitate to sign up for Ferrari if/when he gets the offer.

        The same misconception about Ferrari comes up all the time. Yes, the Scuderia plays as a team and they make no bones about it. But nobody signs up as a #1 or a #2 driver there. The one who is doing best gets the #1 treatment when the need for it arrives. Felipe Massa got the stick only after a string of poor results got him so far behind that he had no realistic options for the WDC. It could of course have been the other way around, and if Massa stays at Ferrari he will eventually get the #1 status, provided that he consistently outperforms Fernando Alonso (if he can overcome his own despondency, I might add). And if Felipe Massa exits and Robert Kubica comes in, well FA and RK will have to race for the #1 status, it will not be given a priori to neither.

        1. That is absolutely right on the money mate!!! Ferrari supported Raikkonen in ’07 cause he was kicking ass and Massa played the supporting role. In ’08, Raikkonen was off form and Massa was on form and as such Ferrari supported him.

          This year, Alonso is on form and Ferrari are supporting him. If Massa stays put and outperforms Alonso next year then Ferrari will back him.

          It’s just that the chances of Massa being faster/more consistent than Alonso are slim to none!!

    2. Personally I’d like to see Kubica in the Red Bull after Webber retires as champ. I’d be very interested in seeing he and Vettel in the same car.

  15. It’s a no brainer, he should stay.

    As you said there are so few race winning seats out there at the moment that it would be foolish to switch teams. Add that to the fact that Massa has a histroy of beating/matching more highly rated team mates and the teams loyalty to him and I think its just a matter of time before he is on the top step of the podium again.

    1. I agree GeeMac, and who knows, he could reach that top step again in Brazil where he has done so well in the past. That would be a great way to redeem himself and put one heck of a stamp onto the end of his season.

    2. voted stay
      ferrari need a number 2 driver, that can be up there wit the front runners. Massa is perfect for them
      If he leaves it will be to a slower car, so Ferrari is best for him

    3. HounslowBusGarage
      17th October 2010, 22:15

      I agree. While it must be galling for him to accept the demands of the team, where else would he go for next year?
      Question about your article, Keith ” I want to see the top seats in F1 occupied by drivers who are going to fight to win races. Looking at Massa’s performance at Suzuka and Hockenheim this year, I’m not convinced that’s the case.” I agree about Suzuka, but I thought Massa’s performance at Hockers was fine, it was Scuderia Ferrari’s performance that was disgusting.
      Massa needs to stay put to see how the new tyers and diffuser rules affect ALO, then make enquiries at one of 2011’s successful teams for 2012 if necessary.

      1. I agree about Suzuka, but I thought Massa’s performance at Hockers was fine, it was Scuderia Ferrari’s performance that was disgusting.

        Still we can’t forget it was Massa who pulled over. Would Vettel, Hamilton, Webber or Button have done the same?

        1. In Hockenheim Massa showed he’s disciplined, unlike those hot heads. Button would obey – he did it already! – in Turkey after Hamilton overtook him (“fuel is low”).

          In Italian culture team spirit, loyalty and discipline is a paramount since – hm – roman legions?

          1. Button would obey – he did it already! – in Turkey after Hamilton overtook him (“fuel is low”).

            Are you saying that in the few seconds Button had the lead someone got on the radio to him and blurted out “fuel is low” and that’s why Hamilton passed him at the next corner?

          2. @Keith, (sorry there is no reply button on your post)

            Button did not try to overtake again, and he just had showed he was in condition to do so…

            Oh, I forgot, that is “hold station” that even being legal they decided to code up…

            Give us a break, please.

  16. Hi Keith,

    I’m not sure i understood your final statements. Massa has clearly proved that he can win races. Maybe not championships (but you never know. Maybe now that Briatore is out of the way…) but definitely races. And as long as you don’t think his accident left an indelible scar on his skills (which i really think it’s not the case) there is no reason to think he can’t win again (Hockenheim pretty much tells that). So as long as you don’t want the x top-driver being in the x top-seats, Massa meets your “requirements”.

    If Ferrari WANTS to have a Barrichello (and they pretty much always had one in their winning years, whether it’s Irvine, Barrichello, Massa, Raikkonen, Massa again) then it’s pointless who He is. Massa worths any other one. Replacing him it’s pointless from Ferrari perspective.
    You can’t do anything about it. The important thing it’s there is ***nothing stopping Alonso from being the next Barrichello, except performances***. If that’s not the case, Massa should leave Ferrari. And Massa knows that, i can read this in every statement he made ever since after Hockenheim’s “sorry”.

    1. Massa has clearly proved that he can win races.

      This year, was my point.

  17. Massa should stay and finish next year until he is replaced by Kubica. He has had a difficult year against a much better driver. I can’t agree with the big bad Ferrari comments as the policy and history of the team has never changed since the start of the championship in 1950. What happened in Germany was not right even for many ‘true’ fans but has shown that for the team and possible outcome this season it may well turn out to be. I don’t think that Massa would be in contention with another 7 points. We fans may have romantic ideas of what happens in this sport but no team does. The tyre change may help him but I can’t see him beating Alonso at any point and if this turns out to be the case he has to support his team mate. This is about whether Massa stays and not how much you dislike Ferrari and Alonso.

    1. It doesn’t matter if they’ve been doing it since Year Dot, morally they’re still the Big Bad (who’d have thought I would ever use a Buffy the Vampire Slayer reference here?). But, as you say, morality is not how it works. It’s like magic (here comes a The Prestige reference) – people want to be fooled. So they go for McLaren or Renault or whomever.

      1. The biggest mistake was made by Dyer in his delivery,not the team. To suggest no other team has used orders is just too far off the mark to justify comment

        1. To suggest that “other people might have done it too” is somehow a worthwile defence is shocking.

  18. I’d like him to stay for equally selfish reasons:

    I loathe the way Ferrari goes racing, and always have. Even their fans have been unsettled at the way they’ve treated Massa, and only the joy of winning in the subsequent races made them ignore it.

    The Hockenheim incident, like the ones before it, show the Scuderia’s massive arrogance, sense of entitlement, and lack of sportsmanship on the racetrack. Their treatment of a driver who has loved and lived the team with all his heart, on the anniversary of a near-fatal accident, when he was winning the race and his “faster” teammate couldn’t get by him or catch him without having an unfair engine advantage, was disgusting, but entirely typical. Their press releases over the past year have shown a total lack of respect for the fans, for their competitors, and the sport, have been rude, childish, peevish and most worryingly of all, generally incorrect. In LdM, they have a boss who is a poisonous influence both on his own team, his drivers, and the sport, much as Ron Dennis was towards the end of his tenure. For a team with such pride in their “unparalleled” success, their records are not that impressive when taken into context that they’ve been in the sport 20 years more than McLaren and 30 years more than Williams. Even the famed Ferrari Red was copied from the Alfa Romeo team that Enzo defected from.

    They are the least genuine, deserving racing team on the grid and I hope that Massa stays next year, because I can guarantee that the way they behave will continue in this vein if he does. That, I think, will show even fans of the Scuderia that there are elements of their team that are reprehensible and incompatible with modern sporting endeavour. From “one rule for us, another rule for them” in 2004, to “bonus success money”, to “being a faster driver doesn’t mean you get to win”, there’s been no shortage of evidence in the past, but I think Massa is so genuinely well liked (albeit not in Brazil any more) that it would be impossible for sections of their supporters to ignore.

    Last year, with Massa’s accident, Kimi’s return to form, the team’s struggles with an uncompetitive car, and Stefano Domenicali’s more affable, open and decent management, Ferrari had a lot of sympathy even from their detractors (like me). This year, they’ve sluiced all that away and proven that the negative things said about them are true.

    1. What’s this got to do with a ‘should Massa stay’ poll. There are more than enough places to rant about teams you don’t like.

      1. I think that’s pretty clear at the top of my post:

        If Massa stays I think the abusive treatment of him would continue next year, and that’s something that I think is good in exposing the team and LdM for who and what they are. If you’re a fan of the team, you may not agree with/like that. That’s fine.

        1. I agree with rampante, that your post was just a “hating” post. Doesn’t contribute too much… it’s just a chance to express your hate for a team.

          1. I stated at the top of the post my reasons for wanting Massa to stay aren’t based on racing, or Massa’s best interests.

            If I were to say “What’s in Massa’s best interest” it would be “run for the door and don’t stretch your legs helping Alonso out on the way”.

          2. @Hairs, well depending on what do you understand to be “Massa’s best interests”. At ferrari he’s making a lot of money. Can’t remember the number, but something like 15 million € a year. Any other team (maybe except McLaren) will pay less than that. So, I think that it’s on Massa’s best interests to stay at Ferrari…

    2. For a team with such pride in their “unparalleled” success, their records are not that impressive when taken into context that they’ve been in the sport 20 years more than McLaren and 30 years more than Williams.

      Let me look at the records:

      Race Wins/Races Competed:
      Ferrari 214/809 = 26.5%
      Mclaren 169/682 = 24.8%

      Constructors Championships/Years Competed:
      Ferrari 16/60 26.7%
      Mclaren 8/44 18.2%

      Ferrari still ahead.

      1. I didn’t say they didn’t win the statistics race – only that their statistics aren’t as impressive as they like to make them out to be. Certainly not when you consider that McLaren/Williams et al didn’t have the benefit of running in the early days, when making relatively modest car improvements could gain significant laptime, the formula was far less restrictive, and individual drivers had more of an effect on laptimes.

        F1 is a much tougher sport to succeed in, particularly in the last 10 – 15 years than it ever was in Ferrari’s first 10-20 years, when teams could compete out of a normal garage. Another irony of Ferrari’s of late – slamming new teams, and small teams for being “garagistes” – when that’s exactly how Ferrari started off themselves.

        1. Besides, McLaren and Williams had to make do without a veto on the FIA regulations and an 80 million a year bonus from FOM.

    3. “One rule for us, one rule for them” – I assume you are refering to the technical veto Ferrari had, are you? If yes, read ahead, else stop here.

      I am not sure you understand what a veto is. It is not a case of two different rules for different sets of teams. It only meant that if Ferrari didn’t approve of a particular rule change, then that change would not be executed. A Ferrari has been subject to the same FIA tests as every other car.

      @Rest: Sorry for dragging out what is obviously, a completely irrelevant post to the topic.

      1. They had a technical veto. They got to see proposed regulations before the rest of the grid. Did any other team have that? No. Did any other team have extra bonus payments if they won, over and above the standard payments from FOM? No. On both counts, “one rule for Ferrari, another rule for the rest of the grid.”

  19. @icthyes So you mean to say that hamilton defeated alonso in the 8 races he finished ahead because of his skill but alonso finished ahead of hamilton in 9 races including spa and italy by conspiring against him? When a driver tests a car he does try to make it suitable to his driving style. Whats wrong with that? Can you give any evidences that alonso and pedro tried to sabotage lewis’s chances by making the car unsuitable to him. And before spa and italy , he also finished miles ahead of lewis in silverstone. It wasnt all of a sudden.please put some better points than these ridiculous conspiracies..alonso admitted himself that he was struggling with brakes and tyres. I am not sure but he had to use a different type of brake to suit his style but the car wasnt best integrated for those brakes and hence he couldnt perform his best.

    1. So you mean to say that hamilton defeated alonso in the 8 races he finished ahead because of his skill but alonso finished ahead of hamilton in 9 races including spa and italy by conspiring against him?


      Can you give any evidences that alonso and pedro tried to sabotage lewis’s chances by making the car unsuitable to him.

      I never said sabotage. I said they worked together to give Alonso an advantage. As for proof, it’s in Mark Hughes’ book on Hamilton.

      And before spa and italy , he also finished miles ahead of lewis in silverstone.

      One race, where I believe there was an issue with tyre pressures. Before then, Alonso hadn’t beaten Hamilton since Monaco and wouldn’t do so again (if you discount the French, European and Turkish races where one or the other suffered a mishap) until Monza.

      I’m not promoting a conspiracy, merely recounting what happened. I believe I’ve put more evidence forward than you have so I don’t get this “put better points” argument.

  20. For him personally it would be better to stay at Ferrari – he isn’t likely to get a top spot anywhere else. Ferrari operates in such way – Alonso is their new Schumacher and they need a number 2 driver to play rear gunman.

    Personally I would love him to lose his seat in Ferrari so a driver who would be able to push to the limit (say for example Webber) and not move over could get the seat. But that is unlikely happen as Ferrari doesn’t want its drivers to fight it out on track.

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