Massa disagrees with penalty for Hamilton collision

2011 Indian Grand Prix

Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Buddh International Circuit, 2011

Massa retired after colliding with Hamilton

Felipe Massa said he shouldn’t have had a drive-through penalty following his collision with Lewis Hamilton in the Indian Grand Prix.

Massa said after the race: “I can only say I do not share the opinion of the stewards who inflicted the punishment.

“I simply stayed on the ideal line, braking on the limit and staying on the part of the track that was rubbered in. What else could I do?

“It?s the umpteenth time that Hamilton runs into me this year and it seems it?s some sort of fatal attraction. In the past, I tried to talk to him but he did not seem to be interested in doing so.”

Ferrari believe the collision with Hamilton contributed to the suspension failure that put Massa out of the race.

Hamilton said: “I tried to overtake and I tried to come out of it because it didn’t look like he was going to give me any space, and we collided.”

The McLaren driver said he’d tried to talk to Massa before the race: “We had the one-minute silence before the start of the race and me and Felipe were standing next to each other. He hasn’t spoken to me since… a long, long time. So I made an effort, I put my arm around him and said ‘good luck for the race’.”

He added: “It’s a disappointing day I’m very, very sorry for my team. They worked hard all weekend as they always do a deserved a result.”

2011 Indian Grand Prix

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333 comments on Massa disagrees with penalty for Hamilton collision

  1. Fixy (@fixy) said on 30th October 2011, 20:17

    So I made an effort, I put my arm around him and said ‘good luck for the race’.

    Apart from the fact Lewis shouldn’t go around telling these things, because it seems like he wants to tell everyone he is the good guy and Massa is the bad guy, if this is true then I feel sorry for him. The way Felipe reacted to losing the title in 2008, mantaining his respect for Lewis, and the way they didn’t hate each other, made me happy, and I’m sad that after three years Felipe is letting his anger burst out. Sure, the Singapore crahs might have been frustrating, but this time not only does Felipe not need to be upset with Lewis, but Lewis should be upset with Felipe.

  2. Fixy (@fixy) said on 30th October 2011, 20:27

    All the Italian press and media present at the race, which, I admit, is biased, concluded Massa was not at fault and neither should have been penalised – some said Hamilton was at fault – but Jean Alesi and Ivan Capelli, which I don’t regard as biased, and have more experience as they’re ex-drivers, made interesting points in Massa’s favour:
    1. – Felipe was ahead of Lewis (Lewis’ front right his Felipe’s rear left);
    2. – Felipe left some space between him and the kerb;
    3. – Felipe stayed on the racing line as if he had driven on the outside he’d have run wide.
    Personally, I think the space Massa left was unsufficient for Hamilton to fit in. But the Ferrari driver was ahead and thus had the right to decide his trajectory before Lewis, as has happened always. There is no real braking zone at that corner, and a pass there is really difficult. If Lewis hadn’t slowed down he and Felipe might have touched, side-by-side, with no real consequence, or Felipe might have swerved right in the end. But Lewis braked and Felipe was ahead. At that point he turned left (of course – the track goes left) but Lewis hadn’t braked enough to stay behind him, just to be partly alongside him, in a position which is difficult to judge by the driver ahead. I wouldn’t have given a penalty to either driver.

    • Fixy (@fixy) said on 30th October 2011, 20:28

      (Lewis’ front right his Felipe’s rear left)

      *Lewis’ front right hit Felipe’s rear left

      • bosyber (@bosyber) said on 30th October 2011, 20:52

        Two things though: Massa lifted off the breaks a bit to get further ahead into the corner, bc. HAM was far enough along side that MAS wouldn’t have been able to get through the corner and stay ahead of HAM; that was different to the normal approach, so he knew enough to change his approach, but then not take care to leave a car’s width on the inside; on the outside there was plenty of space for him, but not to take it at the pace needed to stay ahead – defending on the outside is hard, he should have defended before the corner to keep HAM on the outside, after that it was a bit too late.

        Also, Lewis front right was about the height of Felipe’s sidepod when they hit as far as I recall from rewatching the race.

    • “2. – Felipe left some space between him and the kerb;”

      No he never, he just hadn’t reached the corners Apex yet. The collision happend on corner entry. Massa was attempting to take the normal racing line.

  3. t3x (@t3x) said on 30th October 2011, 22:04

    Felipe was not in the wrong, he was clearly ahead of Hamilton, Hamilton was Not alongside Massa, he was behind.

    This is exactly what would have happened if Alonso hadn’t backed off when Webber passed him at Eau Rouge (Spa). Alonso knew better, so should have Hamilton.

    • John H (@john-h) said on 30th October 2011, 22:28

      Seriously, you can’t just turn in on drivers and expect them to slam on the brakes because you are half a car’s length ahead.

      He should have gave Lewis room and then just kept ahead into the next corner. They could have gone two abreast quite easily. It’s called having respect for each other when racing. Likewise, perhaps Lewis should have realised Massa was just going to turn in on him and driven accordingly.

      Personally, although I think Massa was more to blame it was also just a racing incident in a car race that didn’t require any penalties.

      • Dan83 (@dan83) said on 30th October 2011, 23:19

        No, it’s called, “I’m Lewis and everyone should get out of my way”. How many crashes has this guy had this season? It’s nearly every race.

        • John H (@john-h) said on 30th October 2011, 23:46

          I don’t agree.

          They should each give each other space to race alongside each other.

          Hamilton was clearly at fault with Kobayashi at Spa because he didn’t give him enough room. He was also at fault in my opinion when he drove into Massa at Suzuka.

          But this time Massa was at fault for basically turning into a competitor that was occupying a piece of racetrack and hence causing an avoidable accident, however I do see how it’s easy to view it from a different perspective due to Hamilton’s record this year.

    • The clue is in the if alonso hadnt backed of when webber PASSED him, massa should have seen him up the inside backed off then got the cut back for the better drive. Where did this silly rule of hes infront, i theory ham was infront because he was closest to the apex, massa was infront if they were heading straight of the track but they wernt they were turning left! God i remember all these arguments with my uncle about senna.

    • Fixy (@fixy) said on 31st October 2011, 9:46

      This is exactly what would have happened if Alonso hadn’t backed off when Webber passed him at Eau Rouge (Spa). Alonso knew better, so should have Hamilton.

      I was going to make this point @t3x and I’m glad you see it in the same way as I do. Once Lewis backed off, he should have got out of Felipe’s way, not half-way alongside him.

  4. Dan83 (@dan83) said on 30th October 2011, 23:08

    Wow, am quite surprised the No. of people supporting HAM over another one of his foolish ambitious moves.Totally agree with you Infy.

    • John H (@john-h) said on 30th October 2011, 23:17

      I can’t believe some people are still supporting MAS on this one for one of his foolish ambitious moves!

      Perhaps I’m wrong, but from where I’m looking he looks in his mirrors 3-4 times, clearly knows that Hamilton is alongside and then just drives the corner as if he’s not there, turning into the McLaren and causing the accident.

      But I guess that’s why the world’s such an interesting place – we all see the same event differently! Fair enough.

      • Mads (@mads) said on 31st October 2011, 10:25

        Just because he looks in his mirror it don’t mean that he knows where he is.
        If Hamilton was in his blindspot then it wouldn’t matter how many times he looks in his mirror, he would still not be able to see him.

        • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 31st October 2011, 10:28

          @mads If Massa didn’t think Hamilton was there, why did he move off-line to defend his position?

          • Mads (@mads) said on 31st October 2011, 10:34

            @Keith Collantine I am not saying he didn’t know he was behind him, of cause he did.
            I am just saying that he might not know where he was. I doubt he expected Hamilton to go up his inside into that corner, and if he can’t see him in the mirror as he turns in there is not much he could do about it.
            Not that I know that, that was what happened, I am just trying to say that just because he is looking in his mirror it isn’t a guarantee that he sees him.

          • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 31st October 2011, 10:40

            I am not saying he didn’t know he was behind him, of cause he did.
            I am just saying that he might not know where he was

            I am saying Massa knew Hamilton was alongside him – not just behind him, but drawing far enough alongside his car to make a pass. That is clear not just from the fact that Massa was looking for Hamilton but that he moved his car off-line to defend his position.

            That he did this, and then turned in as if Hamilton wasn’t there, proves why he deserved the penalty.

  5. Ben Grimes said on 30th October 2011, 23:39

    Martin Brundle and DC both said it was a racing incident and there was nothing Massa could have done. I agree with this. These guys have a large amount of F1 experience so I trust there judgement.

    • Jack Holt (@jack-holt) said on 31st October 2011, 10:27

      Brundle also said somewhat cryptically after the race that the replays shed a little more light on the incident. During the race DC was going on about Hamilton being in Massa’s blind spot, but the replays showed that Hamilton swept across both Massa’s mirrors and that Massa was looking at his inside mirror as he squeezed Hamilton. I reckon it’s for this reason that the stewards decided that Massa should be penalised.

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 31st October 2011, 10:33

      there was nothing Massa could have done

      That’s obviously rubbish. He knew Hamilton was there, all he had to do was leave him a little room.

  6. d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 30th October 2011, 23:48

    We all have seen the tapes, I saw live that Massa had clearly known Hamilton was there and deliberately slammed the door shut, fully knowing what would happen. Lewis was along side him, and you can see him backing out towards the corner (otherwise theyd have touched front wheel to front wheel) and hit his front corner on Massa’s back corner. A proper penalty was given. Massa has been slobberingly mad about Lewis and their contacts, and this was Massa saying “alright well you wanna stick your nose in? I am going to turn in anyway” except this time Hamilton had the corner. A proper penalty.

  7. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 31st October 2011, 1:46

    I blame Massa for that incident,Hamilton had more then half the car side by side to Massa before they brake,it was Massa job to avoid as he was on the outside going in the corner.Not sure whether he did it for frustration on Hamilton or not but it didn’t help him by any mean.

  8. kenneth Ntulume said on 31st October 2011, 6:01

    For Massa the rule is plain………..DO NOT let Hamilton through or crash with him if possible…..”Lewis Never Pass me”
    its so intense a rage in him, that Psychologically its valid for him. Like a high skool kid that provokes and starts a fight, then complains that he was hit back…..
    Iam really feeling sorry for Massa here!!!!

  9. alexx_88 (@alexx_88) said on 31st October 2011, 7:34

    I think that’s probably the case. If a driver loses something in an incident like this, the other driver will get a penalty. It’s not fair and I think it will hurt the racing which we all love and want to see.

    Speaking about this incident alone, I can’t see any reason Massa should be blamed here:
    1) He was the car in front as demonstrated by earlier pictures.
    2) He had the RACING LINE. Maybe it’s not clear for some of the other posters, but there’s a good reason why it’s called the racing line. It gives you the best speed through the corner. It’s not a question of how much room is on the outside of the turn, because this is racing, not cruising, and every driver wants to take as much speed through the turn as possible and that’s doable only when clipping the apex, like Massa did.
    3) I also think that it would’ve been impossible for Massa to know the exact position of Ham’s car when he turned in. Watch it frame by frame and realize that you’re talking only about hundreds of a second between the moment when Lewis was alongside Felipe and the moment when Massa got his nose in front benefiting from the better entry point he had chosen.

    The problem is that the incident is between Hamilton and Massa. If there were any other two drivers, there wouldn’t have been any penalty and they would’ve just shaken hands after the race and apologized to each other. Unfortunately, these two really have a history together and it’s a shame, because they’re really good drivers.

    • alexx_88 (@alexx_88) said on 31st October 2011, 7:35

      Sorry, this was a reply for a previous poster.

    • tvm (@tvm) said on 31st October 2011, 11:13

      So what you are saying it that noone can ever overtake in a corner because the leading car can at anytime move to the other side if the holy RACING LINE dictates it.

      FYI You are at the wrong sport, Drag racing is your preferred sport…

      This is racing, not monday morning traffic, all inches of the racing track is in play, see a hole? GO for it.

      • alexx_88 (@alexx_88) said on 31st October 2011, 20:11

        Of course you can overtake, but why say it was Hamilton’s corner? Was he in front or even alongside Massa? No. Was he on the racing line? No. Of course that many drivers would have AVOIDED Hamilton, but that doesn’t say he was entitled to go first into the corner.

        I agree with you that they should be racing each other, but stop and think for a second: 90% (if not all) of Massa’s incidents have been with Hamilton. On the other hand, Hamilton had incidents with half of the grid: Maldonado, Massa, Button, Webber, Kobayashi and that’s only what I remember for the moment.

        FIY, both David Coulthard and Martin Brundle said that a penalty wasn’t necessary here and I don’t think you can put into question that they like Massa more than Hamilton.

        Racing is all about precision, strategy, not driving like crazy and diving into corners with your eyes closed hoping you’ll get it right.

  10. Simon (@) said on 31st October 2011, 7:44

    I’ve no doubt there will be some disagreement – but I want to cast everyone’s mind back to Australia 2011.

    Button, alongside Massa, heading to a corner. Massa turns in as if the car to his side isn’t there. On that occasion, there was an escape road for Button to use to avoid a collision (unlike in India for Massa v Hamilton). But in that situation, Jenson got the penalty, not Massa. Yes, JB got an advantage and took the place, but, looking at the decision in India, doesn’t that show Massa should also have had one for putting a competitor at risk?

    Rules may be modified on reflection, but this is yet another example where a consistent approach from the stewards is sadly lacking.

  11. tobinen (@tobinen) said on 31st October 2011, 9:39

    Racing incident for me, but I veer slightly to Hamilton’s fault. I think it was harsh on Massa and I don’t think Hamilton “had the corner”. He wasn’t far enough alongside. If I was Massa I’d’ve done exactly the same thing. He has to set his stall out for the future.
    We might see these moves in BTCC where the result is the inside guy T-Bones the guy turning in, but not in F1 thanks.

    On the plus side I think this is great for F1. We need more driver grudge matches. It’s been far too long since we had some proper bad feeling amongst drivers.

    • “If I was Massa I’d’ve done exactly the same thing.”

      Then you too would have been penalised.
      The decision has been passed, not to the agreement of the whole F1 fan base, so let it go.
      Massa had been looking good for a penalty for a while, he should of been given one for simply pestering the stewards and Charlie Whiting with his witterings.
      Of course my opinion only.

  12. Jack Holt (@jack-holt) said on 31st October 2011, 10:20

    Ferrari believe the collision with Hamilton contributed to the suspension failure that put Massa out of the race.

    That’s a bit rich, Massa did exactly what he did in qualifying – took all the curb and clobbered the raised concrete bump. No other driver managed to do that, yet Massa did so twice.

    Massa has only scored half the points of his teammate this year, that’s costing his team a lot of prize money. His performance is not good enough to retain his seat and so he seems to be looking for scapegoats. If I were Ferrari I’d be looking to take whoever gets the shove from Toro Rosso or Force India. Ferrari’s the only top team without a balanced line-up: Red Bull, McLaren and Mercedes all have two drivers capable of regularly getting the most out of their car, Ferrari only has Alonso. Whether Massa continues this vendetta or not won’t change the fact that he’s badly under-performed this season.

    • “That’s a bit rich, Massa did exactly what he did in qualifying”

      I am getting quite sick of tripe certin teams come out with. In a sport where everything is seen/heard/monitored/analysed. Honestly, do they think we’re effing blind and/or utterly stupid?

      Massa ****** the kerb like he did in qualifying, noone to blame but himself.

  13. kenneth Ntulume said on 31st October 2011, 10:36

    Massa has somehow how created his relevancy by being seen as feuding with Hamilton, I somewhat think Massa is not worthy of his new found recognition……..
    genius if he intended to achieve this level of attention

  14. The Limit said on 31st October 2011, 13:21

    Looking at these posts, I think its obvious that most agree with Felipe Massa’s penalty. I am of the opinion also, it was petulent by Massa to be honest, and wrecked both their races. I know Ferrari favour Alonso, and after the Indian Grands Prix performance by Felipe I can see why! To be honest, I don’t think Ferrari can be all that impressed by Massa this season, as they need both cars to do well if they ever want to win the constructors championship again. For instance, Rubens Barrichello may have been the perfect foil for Schumacher years ago, but he always got good results for the team and seldom made mistakes.
    This is harsh I know, given the circumstances of Massa’s near fatal 2009 crash, and the fact that he came back into Formula One when others would have quit. But how much longer can the excuse be coughed up by a driver who consistently keeps underperforming? At the moment, he looks like the rookie he was back in 2002 at Sauber, and not championship worthy material that he was for Ferrari in 2008.

  15. Chalky (@chalky) said on 31st October 2011, 13:24

    I do a lot on online racing and here’s a nice description about ‘Corner Rights’, that should be noted by all racers.
    http://wiki.grandprixlegends.info/index.php?title=GPL_Recommended_Driver_Behaviour#Corner_Rights

    “you must establish substantial overlap with the car ahead before a corner’s turn-in point to have the right for room to be left for you by the ahead driver”

    Looking back on the replay, Lewis had this overlap.
    Also the car on the inside will have to slow down more to make the corner, hence Massa being able to brake later in this instance.

    • Oliver said on 31st October 2011, 20:48

      To further add to this, despite braking early, and trying to avoid a mad man, Massa’s sidepods still made contact with Hamilton’s front wheel. Can someone tell me how Massa would have made that corner if Hamilton’s car happened to be a barrier?
      I have never seen people lie so openly in the face of clear facts.
      If Hamilton is ahead, it’s always his fault.
      If Hamilton is behind, it’s always his fault.

      Obviously there is something about Hamilton people just don’t like. Even when he isn’t saying anything.

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