Massa to get new chassis for Malaysian Grand Prix

2012 Malaysian Grand Prix

Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Melbourne, 2012Felipe Massa will have a new chassis for the Malaysian Grand Prix as Ferrari tries to get to the bottom of its troubles with its new F1 car.

In a statement on their website Ferrari said: “Work has already begun in the Sepang pits to prepare chassis number 294, which replaces the number 293 and will be used by the Brazilian in the second race of the season.

“This choice was taken to clear up any doubts about the unusual performance of his car during the weekend at Albert Park.”

Massa qualified 16th in Melbourne, a second slower than team mate Fernando Alonso. He failed to finish the race after colliding with Bruno Senna while running 13th.

Ferrari added: “Felipe knows he can count on the team to do everything, both from the technical and the operational point of view, to put him in a better state to show off his talents ?ǣ even at the cost of extra work in these few days that separate the Australian race from the one in Malaysia.”

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149 comments on Massa to get new chassis for Malaysian Grand Prix

  1. DaveW (@dmw) said on 20th March 2012, 17:46

    When is the last time a bum chassis was proven to explain poor performance? This is not the 80s. The last such discussion I recall was with Vettel’s Monaco chassis in 2010, in which case there was some discussion about it being actually “cracked,” and this was never actually verified. No one is saying Massa’s chassis is “cracked.” The only thing that was cracked is another one of Luca’s televisions, after seeing Massa’s performance.

    Massa needs to evacuate Ferrari. He had his chance last year to go to a decent team like Renault or FI and rebuild his reputation but that is probably gone. Nonetheless, staying there for the rest of this season, with a crap car, Alonso in the other car, and Luca’s malocchio squarely on his back, is not going to end well for him. I think it’s an impossible situation for him now.

    • Robbie (@robbie) said on 20th March 2012, 17:55

      Lol on the Luca’s television remark. As to the ‘crap car’…I think the jury is still out on that…I think the odds are it will be a much better car once they have more time with it, and I think that will be sooner than later, and certainly will not take the rest of the season. I think the fact that the field is close bodes well for Ferrari…FA doesn’t need to pick up a ton of time per lap to be right in there.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 21st March 2012, 13:15

      @dmw Well, Lotus had to skip the second test as a result of a broken chassis. It’s still very early in the season so plenty of things can go wrong.

  2. katederby (@katederby) said on 20th March 2012, 18:16

    Well done Ferrari for getting a replacement chassis ready in time, it’s something RBR couldn’t do last season until they got back to Europe.

  3. John H (@john-h) said on 20th March 2012, 18:24

    A broken chassis doesn’t explain driving into Senna on his outside (i.e. not giving him any room at all) and then keeping his steering wheel turned to the right locking them both together. As well as being slow, the guy has serious driving etiquette issues as we saw last season with Hamilton and is somewhat embarrassing the Ferrari name. Sorry Steph but it’s time for Ferrari to hire someone who can at least get close to Alonso.

    I say get Timo Glock in that Ferrari !!! (I think I may be the first and last person to suggest this)

    • AlexNK said on 20th March 2012, 18:57

      The stewards of the Grand Prix do not share you view of this accident. Neither did those who penalised Hamilton for some of his stupid stunts last year. Perhaps it’s not the best idea to view everything that happens on the race track through LH-labelled specs?

    • DaveW (@dmw) said on 20th March 2012, 20:17

      I thought that as of last year it was no longer cool simply to push a guy off the track on the outside. The old axiom that people passing on the outside assume the risk is gone. I was surprised that they didn’t call him up for that because it was incredibly blatant.

      Timo Glock will have to wait two years to get into a Ferrari like everyone else, after he pays his deposit and delivery fee.

    • Well not the last that’s for sure. Timo deserves a break.

    • Aussie Fan said on 21st March 2012, 1:32

      Yeah he always seems to need to make that extra little push that just isn’t needed towards the other car, if Massa ever overtakes someone up the inside he ALWAYS runs a bit wide into the corner & practically forces them off the track, its not the prettiest of overtaking methods & he seems to expect better in return?

  4. sid_prasher (@) said on 20th March 2012, 18:31

    Good to see Ferrari supporting Massa…it will be a clean start for him in the new chassis. Hoping for a turn around for him in Malaysia.

  5. Aced (@) said on 20th March 2012, 19:22

    It surprises me that no one has brought it up that the Ferrari team could actually be the reason behind his poor form. I’ve never been a fan of Massa, never liked him, but this is getting ridiculous.

    I honestly wonder whether anyone here has ever been into sports. Probably because anyone who has ever been in any kind of sport would know that the way Ferrari have treated Massa would destroy any sportsman. It’s as simple as that. If the team acts towards you as if you’re a second class driver, you’re gonna start believing that yourself and you’re gonna start being one. It’s psychology 101. Massa is a confidence driver just like the likes of Button, Hamilton etc. They’re no Schumachers. So I blame Ferrari here, Massa is only the victim. He was a great driver in 07/08 before Alonso joined Ferrari.

    • Aced (@) said on 20th March 2012, 19:24

      Scratch the “They’re no Schumachers” sentence. I was about to say something more related to that and this way it just doesn’t make sense.

      • Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 21st March 2012, 6:03

        I think you hit the nail on the head @Aced

        Schumacher built Massa up, and then he had a partnership of equals with Kimi. After the first 2 rounds of 2010, Massa was actually leading the World Championship! It was only when Alonso began pushing for his own agenda that Massa slid behind.

        Perhaps if Ferrari had the backbone McLaren had, they would have told Alonso to shut up and earn the number 1 driver slot on merit instead of just handing it to him like a whiney baby.

        • infy (@infy) said on 21st March 2012, 9:15

          The first 2 rounds only? Dude get over yourself. 2 rounds is nothing to ride home about. Alonso was ahead of Massa on merit alone. Do you really think Ferrari’s crew of staff who absolutely love massa would have instantly switched over to Alonso, the newcomer? NO they wouldn’t have.

          Alonso is a strong leader in the same way previous Champs like Senna and MS. They demand respect through their racecraft, not an “agenda”.

          You are such a typically blind Lewis fan who believes everything the media/commenter say.

          • Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 21st March 2012, 15:00

            I’m actually not a Lewis fan.

            Hate to break it to you, but F1 is about far more than just Fernando VS. Lewis.

  6. JamieFranklinF1 (@jamiefranklinf1) said on 20th March 2012, 19:41

    A lot of people seem to blame the Hungary ’09 incident as to why Massa has dropped off in form, and it’s easy to see why. However, I think there may be another reason. The start of 2009 was pretty mediocre for Felipe, and he yielded one or two decent results, but so did Raikkonen.

    I personally think that his problem originally lies in the fact that there is no more in-season testing. Pre-2009, Massa was a good driver and was on par with his team mates nearly every year, even if some of those years he didn’t do quite as well. Obviously you could argue that his performance in Germany ’10 could prove this theory wrong, but we’ve seen that Alonso is more adaptable and can get the most out of the car whereas Massa can’t.

    Schumacher had the same problem. That’s why he was so successful before retirement. He could build the car to what suited him. But I think he’s still a better driver than Massa and we’ll see just how adaptable he can be this season.

    It’s unfortunate for Felipe, but I don’t think we’ll see him return to form.

  7. Pamphlet (@pamphlet) said on 20th March 2012, 19:52

    If this doesn’t work I don’t know what will.

  8. OOliver said on 20th March 2012, 21:08

    Felipe also knows he can count on Ferrari to channel his win to Alonso’s diffuser.

  9. David Smith said on 20th March 2012, 21:21

    It would be interesting to hear Rob Smedleys views on all this?

    • Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 21st March 2012, 6:07

      It would be fascinating as he and Felipe are so close. Surely Rob has more insight into it than anyone else in the team, but if they gagged the drivers once in pre-season testing, I imagine it would be a cold day in **** before they let Smedley shed any light on it.

      Which is a shame really.

  10. carlos said on 20th March 2012, 21:24

    IMO it is not the car, or the accident. It is a mind game that keeps him down. The more he tries to drive faster and beat Alonso the slower he gets. For him it must be like working with a guy that does no wrong, no matter how wrong that person does. There are excuses for this type of person, but not for the ones trying to compare, to beat or be an equal. Massa got married, had a kid, an accident, and was thrown together with the King of Mind Games, Fernando Alonso. He needs to change and restart on a clean slate. Ferrari is a mine field and Alonso is the general in charge of it..move on Massa…
    Massa had no problem keeping up with Kimi or Schumi, but Alonso has set a trap and anyone that gets in will fail. He gets motivated by “going faster than you”. On same equipment at McLaren he was throwing fits because Ron Dennis cleared his minefields for Lewis.

    • Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 21st March 2012, 6:11

      Which is why Alonso can never be the leader that Schumacher was, Vettel is and others will be in the future. I respect his driving immensely, but his character is very much in doubt.

  11. Meander (@meander) said on 20th March 2012, 22:40

    “Felipe knows he can count on the team to do everything, both from the technical and the operational point of view, to put him in a better state to show off his talents.”

    I’m no conspiracy theorist, but it’s hard not to read between the lines on this choice of words. It basically says that after this Ferrari have done everything possible for Massa to showcase his talent, meaning that, if there are still no results after this, he apparently has none (or has lost it). It’s a mean thing to say. This isn’t reassurance, this is pressure.

  12. looks like ferrari kicked out the wrong driver at the end of 2009. Felipe hasent been the same driver since the accident

    • Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 21st March 2012, 6:14

      I really do think that Ferrari would have preferred to have kept Kimi at the end of 09 and let Massa go, but after the accident it would have made them look like evil and heartless.

      Plus a Kimi-Alonso partnership would have been the strongest duo in F1 since Senna-Prost, and I’m certain Alonso wouldn’t have gone for that. Kimi would have no problem, but Alonso doesn’t have that kind of courage/madness you find in someone like Kimi or Senna.

      • TimG (@timg) said on 21st March 2012, 10:56

        A key factor in Ferrari’s decision was Raikkonen’s lack of motivation in 2009. On paper, a Raikkonen-Alonso line-up would have been very strong indeed, but at the time Raikkonen wasn’t exactly displeased to be paid handsomely not to drive. Besides, before Massa’s accident he’d scored more points than Raikkonen (22 points vs 10) and generally looked the better driver.

  13. Marco (@f1lipino) said on 21st March 2012, 4:27

    Slightly off topic. Anyone else think Kobayashi deserves the 2nd seat at Ferrari?

  14. matt said on 21st March 2012, 9:40

    Unless Ferrari build a world beater and at the same time Alonso is sidelined by injury Massa will never win a WDC at Ferrari, it just wouldn’t make sense for them. He should leave and take his knowledge to a lesser team that would be desperate for him to drive and would offer him the support he so obviously needs to be successful. He may be stepping away from the top tier, but he’d have a better chance of proving his talent is still up there to other teams.

  15. Jack Flash (Aust) said on 21st March 2012, 12:17

    I hope for Felipe Massa’s sake that the Chassis #294 is the secret experimental model with hidden inbuilt jet-afterburners installed! I think that’s about what he’ll need to out-qualify Alonso at Sepang this weekend.

    That, or take to Alonso’s knees with a baseball bat, like Tonya harding did to Nancy Kerrigan. LoL.
    Hope to be proven wrong… really I am… but seriously doubt it. Felipe is just so down on confidence, and so nervy he’s picking collision fights with anything. Even the track marshalls are nervous behind the barriers. JF

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