Ferrari retain Massa for 2013

2013 F1 season

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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145 comments on Ferrari retain Massa for 2013

  1. Journeyer (@journeyer) said on 16th October 2012, 18:19

    “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.”

    Oh, Ferrari. We stopped speculating about 2013 weeks ago, once we figured out your plan. Haven’t you heard all the talk is about your 2014 lineup now? ;)

  2. crr917 (@crr917) said on 16th October 2012, 18:22

    Imagine Massa keeps his form from Korea. Now go a bit further and up his quali pace. Fast forward to the last 5 laps of Rnd.1 of the 2013 F1 world championship. Massa leads and Vettel alternator has just failed promoting Alonso to second.
    What would Ferrari do? :D

    Now multiply by 20.

  3. @jamesf1 – Maybe Ferrari know something we don’t, or they simply trust Massa with the job. I don’t know. You’re right in what you’re saying but there’s no other driver on the grid now who has less to demonstrate than Massa and who is more capable of keeping up with Alonso without passing him, accepting to be the lab rat for all the updates and doing it all without creating any tension in the team. Perez wouldn’t have been able to do it, Hulkenberg wouldn’t have been able to do it. The only guy that would have been up to the job is Di Resta. And he is without doubt slower in essence and more inexperienced than Massa.

    Actually the only guy better than Massa at this job would have been Kovalainen. I don’t have a clue why they didn’t get him…Maybe because they didn’t want to waste the time he would have needed to adapt and get to know the team.

    Anyway, I’m glad they kept Massa at least for another year. He clearly loves Formula 1 and he is trying. Hard. He reminds me of Barrichello in a way. He deserves a seat.

    • Oh, dumb me! I replied in the wrong place…sorry about that…

    • James (@jamesf1) said on 16th October 2012, 18:41

      @tony031r I agree about Kovalainen. Personally I would have said he would have been the best man for the job. His performances have been outstanding in the Caterham/Team Lotus donkeys over the last three seasons.

      I guess the deciding factor is that they know Massa would be willing to back down to Alonso. He’s also a know quantity for the team. Given that the regs arent really changing much this year into the next, they probably assume that Massa should continue as he is now in his results. Ferrari would be wise to never asssume though, as it makes an “ass” out of “u” and “me”.

  4. Lew Numba 1 (@lew-numba-1) said on 16th October 2012, 18:33

    I really thought Massa was due up for an HRT seat next year. He may have his moments but he hasn’t been the same since he was hit in the head. It would’ve been nice to see what some of the other talented drivers could’ve done with the red car.

    IMO, better picks: Kovalainen, DiResta, Hulkenberg, and Kobayashi. Seriously, who even knows how talented Pic, Ricciardo and Vergne really are when they’ve been in cars that were well off the pace this year.

  5. nidzovski (@nidzovski) said on 16th October 2012, 18:40

    I’ll just hope that he can beat Mr. I’m so special cry baby Alonso next year. I mean Alonso is one of the fastest drivers out there, and so was Schumy, but it takes something else to be a hero in my eyes.

  6. carbon_fibre (@carbon_fibre) said on 16th October 2012, 19:02

    You ‘re not a fan of Ferrari if you don’t like this piece of news. Massa has been associated with Ferrari for almost a decade now and it will be a sad day when he leaves.I know that he has cost lots of WCC points but I never want him to leave Ferrari.I am sure the team feels the same way and that’s why they keep him.Plus, he was the protagonist of the race that got me hooked in F1 (Interlagos 2008).
    Besides all this, Massa was the best choice for Ferrari in 2013. He knows the team and the team knows him.A new driver would take too much time to adapt and he wouldn’t be as a good team player as Massa is .
    Anyway, I ‘ll be watching him closely in the remaining races.If he continues to bring good results,2013 will be his best year in F1 since 2008.

    • I agree 100% w/ you. It might be irrational, defy logic, or be an emotions-based decision, but I like Felipe w/ Ferrari and am not ready to see him go!

    • Jono (@me262) said on 17th October 2012, 0:20

      Massa also speaks Italian which is an advantage at Ferrari

    • MASSA IS THE BEST FIRT FOR FERRARI NEEDS

      Due to limited testing, Ferrari need one car to do in-race testing and this is what Massa has been doing until the last couples of races when they needed to show that Massa still has it so they can justify this decision.

      Congratulations to Massa and I wish they sack his engineer who always takes a dig at both Massa and Ferrari if you listen between the line. He is the rottn apple in the cart.

      God > infinity

  7. This is great news, i can only hope for Massa’s sake that he get off really good with the 2013 car and could be in front from the start, and then taking the title!

  8. caci99 (@caci99) said on 16th October 2012, 20:04

    This is good news for Massa. His recent form has paid off, so I expect he will be more confident, and that is what Ferrari wants. On the other hand, I still believe that at Ferrari are up to something, the fact that they have extended Massa’s contract by only one year may be proves that they were looking for a driver available for one year.

  9. Really happy for Massa.

  10. rayan (@rayan) said on 17th October 2012, 2:29

    Happy for massa…i hope ferrari will give some importance to him also during the race,so that he is able to prove himself,,,rather testing parts,tyres for alonso ……

  11. Dave (@dworsley) said on 17th October 2012, 3:22

    Good on Felipe. Don’t get what everyone else’s problem is. Massa is a teamplayer, and at least recently has had adequate speed. A good fit for Ferrari and Alonso.

  12. Eric Morman (@lethalnz) said on 17th October 2012, 5:23

    you can race just dont beat your team mate.
    wounder if Massa will slow down now he has a contract.

  13. katederby (@katederby) said on 17th October 2012, 7:55

    No surprise, Massa is the perfect team mate for Alonso. Which only confirms my doubts of the possibility of a Vettel/Alonso line up.

  14. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 17th October 2012, 8:27

    I spotted an interesting comment from Joe Saward just now, and while I don’t particularly like Saward or his style, I’m surprised at just how much I agreed with him: Ferrari could still go after Mark Webber.

    Ferrari were known to have made him an offer earlier this year, but he signed with Red Bull for one more year, claiming that it was the place to be – and ever since he reaffirmed his place in the team, everybody has kind of forgotten about him. But this is Ferrari we’re talking about: they don’t give up just because the driver they want isn’t available straight away. And while Webber is at the point of his career where he is taking things one year at a time, if you look back over Ferrari’s driver line-ups over the past two decades, they have been the single most stable team on the grid. Sure, they let Ivan Capelli go after one season, but they had originally signed him up for three. And they originally wanted to partner Raikkonen with Alonso before Raikkonen decided to go rallying.

    Meanwhile, everybody has been caught up in the rumours of Vettel going to Ferrari in 2014. But Christian Horner insists that Vettel is under contract until 2015 and Luca di Montezemolo has shot down the idea of having “two roosters” in the team. And while most people believe the Horse Whisperer’s latest diary entry to be implying that Ferrari are saying one thing and thinking another, everything the Horse Whisperer can be applied to each and every single driver on the grid.

    Webber has signed a one-year deal, convinced that it is the place to be in 2013 – but he has experienced a slump in form ever since he agreed to another year, while Vettel is leading the championhip. Ferrari have only taken Massa on for another year, believing he has done enough to keep the seat, but not offering him a multi-year extension. Webber and Alonso also know each other quite well, and would work well together – probably far better than Alonso and Vettel would. Webber is a team player, having filled that role at Red Bull for a while now, but strong enough to pick up the reins if something should befall Alonso. And when Ross Brawn was wooing Hamilton over to Brackley, he made the comment that manufacturer teams “are the place to be” from 2014. All of this seems to be lining up quite nicely, wouldn’t you say?

    Of course, there is the matter of Vettel’s rumoured pre-contract with Ferrari. I would not be surprised if that contract exists – for some time around 2017. I’d wager Ferrari is weighing up Sebastian Vettel as Alonso’s replacement, not his team-mate.

  15. Jason (@jason12) said on 17th October 2012, 9:25

    This feels like a case of charity.
    Sit ubu sit, good dog.

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