Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Hockenheimring, 2012

Ferrari retain Massa for 2013

2013 F1 seasonPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Hockenheimring, 2012Felipe Massa will remain at Ferrari in 2013, the team has confirmed.

A statement released by the team on Tuesday said: “Scuderia Ferrari announces that it has renewed its contract with the driver Felipe Massa to the end of the 2013 race season.”

“The Scuderia?s driver line-up for next year is therefore made up of Fernando Alonso and the aforementioned Felipe Massa.”

Massa said he is “very happy to have reached this agreement”.

“Ferrari is my racing family and throughout my entire time in Formula 1, I have always driven cars powered by engines built in Maranello: I can?t see myself driving cars propelled by anything else!

“First and foremost, I want to thank president Montezemolo and [team principal] Stefano Domenicali, who had faith in me and who have always supported me, even at the most difficult moments. The team and also all the fans can rest assured that I will do all in my power to help the Scuderia reach the targets it sets itself each year.”

Domenicali said: “He has been part of our family for over a decade and has shown, especially in this recent part of the season, that he is once again competitive at the highest level, which is what is expected of every driver who gets behind the wheel of a Ferrari.

“We have always supported Felipe, even in the most difficult moments of his career and we are certain of his worth and are sure he will know how to repay the confidence this renewal proves we have in him.”

Yesterday Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo denied claims Sebastian Vettel would join the team in 2014, saying: “I don?t want to have two roosters in the same henhouse.”

“I am so happy to continue another year with Felipe Massa as a team mate!” Alonso wrote on Twitter. “I?m sure we are the best team!”

“After eight different team mates Felipe staying is another example of what I always say: do not believe anything you read unless it?s official,” he continued.

Ferrari’s statement added: “Now that Massa?s situation has been cleared up, maybe speculation surrounding Ferrari drivers will calm down for a few days, but that?s probably a vain hope: the rumour mill works round the clock, manned by people who, having said one thing and then the complete opposite, can congratulate themselves on having got it just right.

“Indeed, this was one of the reasons that pushed Montezemolo and Massa to decide on announcing the renewal today, to put an end to all the speculation.”

Massa will remain with Ferrari for an eighth season. He joined them from Sauber in 2006 to partner Michael Schumacher.

In 2008 Massa finished runner-up to Lewis Hamilton in the drivers’ championship, winning six races.

But he missed half of the season in 2009 after suffering head injuries during qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix. He has not won a race since returning in 2010, when Alonso joined Ferrari as his team mate.

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172 comments on “Ferrari retain Massa for 2013”

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  1. Alonso will be very happy.

    1. My thought indeed. Seems like it was Alonso’s choice just like it was clearly his choice not to let Massa race for position which could potentially have brought Alonso ahead of Webber.

  2. No real surprise, but I’m actually quite happy for him. Hopefully he can continue in the direction he’s been going in in recent races into next year and show that he does deserve that seat on his own merit and not just as Fernando’s helper.

    1. @f1alex,

      I’m actually quite happy for him

      Really? I hope you’d reconsider that. Does he really deserve the seat more than Koba, Kova or Hulk???

      Anyway, Massa was always going to retain the seat under ‘ordinary conditions’, given that he is managed by the FIA chief’s son…unless of course, he had done a Grosjean or a Maldonado!

      1. I never said he deserves it more or less than anyone else, because there are other drivers I would also like to see in that seat. What I was saying is that I’m happy to see him stay in F1 and keep his Ferrari seat because I want to see what he can do next year.

        At no point did I mention whether he deserves it or not, because I don’t really think he does (well he wouldn’t if the team wasn’t Ferrari, as they only want one “rooster” in their team anyway), but that doesn’t stop me feeling pleased for him.

  3. One word: Boring

    1. +1….Massa is the “Ringo” of Formula 1 :)

  4. Who would have thought that halfway through the year! Hopefully he can continue his recent form and start next year without encountering the same problems.

  5. I think he’s entering his 8th season in 2013.

  6. “I don’t want to have two roosters in the same henhouse.”

    Well, now Luca has all set up: He has confirmed he has a rooster and a hen

    1. Which is appropriate, because Massa is going to keep getting screwed by Alonso.

      Sorry, couldn’t resist!

      1. Haha, brilliant!

      2. Someone’s cloaca is gonna hurt again

      3. @estesark

        .. Massa is going to keep getting screwed by Alonso.

        unless alonso stays happy(read “gay”)!, which is maybe why Monty does not *want* two roosters in the first place.
        No offense intended towards ‘happy’ people!

    2. I think you mean a rooster and chicken….

    3. Yeah. Luca just showed how great of a family Ferrari really is. I guess that his children will be also wondering who is the rooster. The most stupid comment of the year!

      1. In the heat I forgot to write that Luca is the winner of the most stupid comment :)

        1. We have long understood that Montezemolo was thinking something along those lines, but saying it public, huh.
          But I’m happy – expecting Massa to decline to his usual form and the competition will be better of and happy too.

        2. I think with Luca that’s a given -.-

  7. I do think that this is a bit of a non-story.. Massa has shown in the last few races that he still has that pace that Ferrari need, even if it has taken him a few years to get back ‘into the groove’. I hope he can continue, although it’s sad to note that unless something drastic happens in 2013 to Alonso, he won’t be fighting for the championship realistically.

    1. Didn’t we say that about him in 2008? If he’s fast enough in the first few races don’t be surprised if he actually pushes Alonso for the title of #1 driver for once.

      Of course, I don’t expect Ferrari to let that happen, but we’ve seen more shocking things happen in the sport.

      1. It’s different in 2007 Raikkonen never had the edge over Massa. Massa was unlucky in Monza when he was faster then Rai, in front of him in the race and in front in points…but then the engine is gone….in two of the 3 remain races Massa was in front but he let Rai pass for the championship. I wasn’t surprised in 2008 with Massa performance.
        Now is completely different Alonso & Massa had 3 years of workgroup. Alonso has beaten Massa in any sens:
        Much faster
        more strategic
        Team leader
        man image for ferrari

        I have a lot of respect for Massa and as a ferrari fan i love him, but the numbers speak clearly

      2. It’s interesting if Alonso have poor first 5 races due to various reasons and Massa is on podium every single time, what will they do? Will Santander allow Ferrari to pull a 2008?

        1. It’s interesting if Alonso have poor first 5 races due to various reasons and Massa is on podium every single time

          That sounds similar to 2010. Alonso made a lot of mistakes at the start of the season, but come halfway point in the season he was already leading his teammate.

    2. @keeleyobsessed

      I do think that this is a bit of a non-story.

      It’s just been officially confirmed for the first time so not doing a story on it is not an option.

      1. It would be kind of funny if you didn’t do a story on a major event though, almost elevating it’s significance… a kind of F1fanatic John Cage moment if you will. :)

  8. As an aside: Who controls Ferrari’s PR? They come across in so many ways you have to wonder how they are run. This release is so incredibly and unnecessarily formal (“the aforementioned Felipe Massa”…***) and then they have their Horse Whisperer who rants and raves like a 13 year old schoolboy. Pick a style and stick to it! Be overly formal (like McLaren, Red Bull or Mercedes)or be very informal…don’t be both!

    1. Heh I’ve noticed that too and always just figured the “official” statement is written in Italian, but quite often with words that are a bit odd (perhaps because a word or phrasing has no direct translation) or just generally sounds a bit out of place for the “speaker” so to err.. speak? heh

  9. Not much left to be said, but I hope Massa can start next season with his current form and actually perform from the get-go!

    1. To be honest I’m not expecting Massa to maintain this level of performance. At the start of next season he should be back to his Q2 exits and fighting Saubers for 9th and 10th place.

      I’m not entirely happy with Massa as the number 2 driver… would much rather have seen Hulkenberg or Sutil in that seat.

  10. If he did what he’s done in the last 5 races but for a whole season, he’d be 2nd in the championship.

    Lets hope it stays that way, although I can see the same happening next season – the car is developed purely with Alonso in mind, and by the time the car is good enough for both drivers to finish well, he’ll already be 100 points behind Fernando. Hope I’m proved wrong though.

    1. Would be interesting to note from a sports-psychology perspective when Massa became confident of being re-signed (really, like when did he know it would happen) and did that knowledge exert any positive influence on his competitiveness? And if so, too bad Ferrari didn’t re-sign him sooner if that was what was going to happen!

      1. That’s an interesting point..

        If Ferrari had signed Massa just before he did a great job with his podium at Suzuka, then they should look to sign him on a race by race basis, before each race. Maybe a happy Felipe is one of the best drivers in the world whereas if Massa’s disheartened, he’s a second a lap away from the best?!

    2. If he did what he’s done in the last 5 races but for a whole season, he’d be 2nd in the championship.

      And that’s why they’re keeping him. Sounds strange said about someone with Massa’s experience, but he is a promosing driver.
      While in 2011 he was consistently under-performing, this season he has had either awful or awesome (compared to 2010 and 2011) races. Silverstone finally gave him his best result in one-and-a-half years, at Monza he was ahead of Alonso whom he let through with team orders, in Singapore he had an amazing race to recover from last and nearly lapped to finish 8th including a breath-taking overtake on Senna, in Japan he was perfect and scored a podium and in Korea he was forced to slow down as he was much quicker than Alonso (again, team orders). If Ferrari need team orders to keep Alonso in front, Massa may not be so slow after all.
      It’s somehow sad though that his 11 wins are all included in the three seasons between 2006 and 2008, out of 10.
      And Massa is solidifying his position as Ferrari’s second-longest serving driver after Schumacher. He is not as likely to be remembered as a symbol of the Prancing Horse unfortunately.

  11. Ferrari don’t like the idea of having the best drivers on the grid. Mclaren wants to have best drivers on the grid, but they always make mistakes elsewhere, hence they haven’t won construcotrs’ title since 1999. So the most professional team is Red Bull, because they have best (or at least very good) drivers, they work professionally, they don’t look for excuses, they can quickly develop their car and they are professional ir all areas. No wonder they are winning all the titles.

    1. It isn’t just the driver that wins the titles. The car in most part has something to do it too. Would Webber and Vettel be winning the constructors and driver titles the past two years if they were driving for HRT?

      1. Sure, you can say that. But not to loose the point, let’s put for instance the racers winner over people, + cars and technology + funding & management. And Red Bull team is good in all aspects. Ferrari? Too much emotional. McLaren? Too proud. Red Bull? Professional.

      2. That works in both ways.. Would Karthikeyan and De la Rosa have won de championships in the Red Bull?

        1. Well, I think that the Red Bull was so dominant that any driver pairing on the grid could have won the drivers and constructors championship.

          1. …dominant ‘last year’ that any…

            Sorry, I made a mistake.

          2. The fact that Webber was only third in the WDC in the same car and barely ahead of Alonso would suggest not.

          3. @jackhider – Nonsense. Webber finished behind Button, and 1 point in front of Alonso. Since when, in over 60 years, has a Karthikeyan-like driver won the championship?

          4. Am I right that although Webber might have not won the Drivers title, he did help win the Constructors title and Vettel did in fact win the Drivers title? We are talking about driver pairings here and not one single driver winning only just the Drivers title.

            Anyway, what do you class as a ‘Karthikeyan-like’ driver anyway? Surely there is only one type of driver like him and that being the real Karthikeyan?

          5. And although the car might’ve not seem as dominant as cars have been in past years (Schumacher era) but it was still a dominant car for that season, a dominance that hadn’t been seen since the beginning of 2009.

          6. Am I right that although Webber might have not won the Drivers title, he did help win the Constructors title and Vettel did in fact win the Drivers title?

            Yes, and not every driver is as good as Vettel at using whatever car he has to devastating effect, or even Webber, with his flashy performances for the mighty Minardi/Jaguar/Williams. Not “any driver pairing” would have won the titles, let alone as clearly as the RBR pair did.

            Anyway, what do you class as a ‘Karthikeyan-like’ driver anyway? Surely there is only one type of driver like him and that being the real Karthikeyan?

            I.e. one considered, for whatever reason, to be the worst on their respective grid. Has such a driver not just driven a good car, but won the world championship?

          7. Even with a “dominant” car, you need the drivers to show that dominance in order to dominate. That’s why although as you said earlier, the car plays a role, you cannot forget the driver, nor claim that anyone could have done the same.

          8. @jackhider a pairing of Webber and his imaginary twin (ie two exactly same performing drivers) probably wouldn’t have.

          9. Red Bull’s most “dominant” year was, by far, 2010. They have been less dominant every year, since then. This year, they haven’t been dominant at all, until the last couple of races.

          10. De la Rosa had his chance at McLaren and what did he do? Nothing.
            The formula is (great driver + great car = wins)
            I am not sure if we have ever seen a “any” driver win the championship only because he had the fastest car. Have we? They win because they are very good, so good they can beat their team mates who drive the same machine.

      3. @jackhinder – would Hamilton or Alonso win the world championship in an HRT? Absolutely not! No driver can win the world championship if his car isn’t even capable of scoring a point.
        I doubt Karthikeyan or De La Rosa could win the world championship, even in one of the dominant Ferrari’s, that is why they are driving for HRT and not RBR. Good drivers make all the difference; in Suzuka last year Vettel was on pole by 9 thousandths of a second because he pulled out a great lap to un-spur a faster McLaren from P1. Karthikeyan would probably only have been good for 4/5th.
        And lastly, do you know why Red Bull had the fastest car last year? Because they were the best team with the best driver.

    2. My Freind Ferrari has already the best driver in the grid. What they need is the best car on the grid.

      1. Yes, maybe You are right. If they also had a top 6 driver no 2, then he would have picked enough points from their worst competitors, so their no 1 driver would, maybe, still be leading. If You have the best car on the grid, then You don’t need the best driver – See Brawn.

  12. So, if he’s got a “contract extension” as reported on the BBC, who goes there in 2014? Or is Massa on a sort of probationary year next year?

    1. You never know, it could be Vettel (although Di Montozemolo appears to not wish that to happen as long as Alonso’s there).

      1. Maybe Alonso is on his way out ;)

        1. @celeste While I don’t believe that to be likely – we should remember Count Monty can be rather ruthless with drivers. Remember him basically sacking Schumacher for Raikkonen, then Raikkonen for Alonso?

          1. Well, I guess we could call that Karma on F1 level…

          2. @raymondu999 – you never know, if Vettel is a 4-time world champion by then and Alonso obviously still hadn’t won one with Ferrari, they could cut his contract short (I don’t believe that would happen though). And judging from Luca’s reaction he doesn’t appear to want two really competitive drivers in the same team…

          3. @vettel1 as I said, you never know. In 2006 Schumacher had won 5 titles with Ferrari, and was fighting for a 6th. And yet he still saw fit to hire Raikkonen. I don’t think anyone is ever safe with a Ferrari drive whilst Count Monty is at the helm.

            Remember a while back he said that Alonso needs to win a title if he expects Monty to hire a patsy number 2 for the other Ferrari

  13. I feel like Alonso is the only winner here. Massa will continue to lose any remaining credibility, getting trounced into #2 status for another year. Ferrari will most likely not feature in the Constructors battle next year because only one driver will be scoring serious points. And the fans are robbed of seeing some new talent in the seat that Massa should have been forced to vacate a long time ago.

    1. Well said, I completely agree.

    2. @dot_com Agree completely. Also dont think Alonso is thinking this through. He much rather have a faster and more consistent teammate who can battle the Red Bulls and Mclaren instead of Felipe.. who keeps the Toro Rossos at bay

    3. If Massa is unable to consistently take the fight to Alonso in equal machinery, then I’m afraid the number 2 position is exactly where he deserves to be. If he is able to take the fight to Alonso, then all the talk of hens and cocks will be irrelevant; as in the case of 2006/7, it will be the driver who comes out on top by the end of the season who will get the preferential treatment. Ferrari want to win the WCC and the WDC, in that order. They don’t really mind which of their drivers is the one who wins the WDC as long as one of them does.

      But of course, it doesn’t matter how good your driver pairing is if you don’t give them a car capable of fighting for victory. Ferrari must do better in this respect. Yes, Red Bull are very good, but Ferrari are Ferrari. They cannot allow themselves to be totally outclassed by a drinks company for the fifth year running.

      1. (sorry, that should be 2007 and 2008)

  14. Anyone else get the impression 2013 will be a ‘farewell’ season for Felipe Massa?

    1. Yes, his 4th in a row 8)

      1. Hah. Nice one!

  15. I can’t wait to hear Massa on the radio after his first win.. “Not bad for a … hen!” :)

    1. And then you wake up :)

  16. Wow, how stupid are they at Ferrari camp? Massa has been awful since his 2009 accident and few good performances shouldn’t guarantee a seat for him.

    It looks like Ferrari doesn’t even want to win constructor’s championship.

    1. as stupid as it gets…
      sucks to be a ferrai fan now……

      1. That sounds a bit overly-critical now. Obviously they think Massa best satisfies their need for a partner to Alonso who is of a certain mind-set, temperament and ability that usually is not found in the same driver. There is no shame in being a loyal domestique or gregario for the Ferrari team. Maybe Felipe realizes he will never win WDC w/ Ferrari, but he’s OK w/ that b/c he knows he won’t win a WDC anywhere else?

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