|Born||25 April 1981|
São Paulo, Brazil
|Formula One World Championship career|
|First Grand Prix||2002 Australian Grand Prix|
|Entries||193 (191 starts)|
|Final Grand Prix||2013 Brazilian Grand Prix|
Felipe Massa (born 25 April 1981) is a Brazilian Formula One racing driver. Massa started his Formula One career with Sauber before joining Scuderia Ferrari as a test driver for 2003. He returned to Sauber for 2004 and 2005 before rejoining Ferrari. He finished second in the 2008 Drivers' World Championship after a long title battle with Lewis Hamilton. At the 2009 Hungarian Grand Prix, Massa was injured by a suspension spring off the Brawn GP car of Rubens Barrichello. Massa suffered a dip in form after his return from injury failing to win a race, but maintaining podium finishes.
Felipe Massa was born in São Paulo, to a family whom originally emigrated from Cerignola, Italy. He began karting when he was 8 years old, finishing fourth in his first season. He continued in national and international championships for 7 years, and in 1998 moved into Formula Chevrolet, finishing the Brazilian championship in fifth place. During the following season, he won 3 of the 10 races and claimed the championship.
In 2000, he moved to Europe to compete in the Italian Formula Renault series, winning both the Italian and the European Formula Renault championships that year. He could have moved to Formula Three in 2001, but instead chose the Euro Formula 3000, where he won 6 of the 8 races and the championship. He was then offered a Formula 1 test with the Sauber team, who signed him for 2002.
The 2002 season was Felipe's first Formula One season with Sauber. He was paired with 1999 International Formula 3000 champion Nick Heidfeld. He proved he was a competitive driver, but made several mistakes, including spinning off the track several times. Nevertheless, Massa scored 4 championship points in his first season, his best result a 5th place at the Spanish Grand Prix at the Circuit de Catalunya. He suffered a one race suspension late in the season, forcing him to miss the United States Grand Prix. Sauber confirmed that Heinz-Harald Frentzen would partner Heidfeld in 2003, leaving Massa without a race seat, instead he signed for Sauber's engine suppliers, Ferrari, gaining experience by testing for the championship-winning team.
In 2005 Massa out-performed Sauber team mate and former champion Jacques Villeneuve to finish 13th in the standings. He matched his career-best result with fourth place in Canada. He Signed on as Michael Schumacher's Ferrari team mate for 2006.
In 2006 Massa achieved three pole positions and two race wins in his first year partnering Michael Schumacher at Ferrari to help strengthen his reputation as one of the sport's rising talents. He finished third overall in drivers' championship.
In 2007 Massa scored three wins and six pole positions, but reliability issues and a disqualification in Canada put him out of title contention. Nevertheless, he played a vital role in Ferrari's 2007 championship double and re-signs for the team until 2010.
In 2008 Massa showed new levels of speed and maturity, becoming Ferrari's main championship contender with six victories and six pole positions. He missed out on the title by a single point, despite winning the dramatic season finale in his native Brazil.
In 2009 due to Ferrari's initial lack of pace and reliability Massa had no podium appearance until round nine, then he fractures his skull in a freak qualifying accident in Hungary, where he is struck by a loose spring from another car. He missed the remainder of the season.
Massa started the 2010 season with a second-place qualifying place, and a second-place finish in Bahrain behind team-mate Fernando Alonso. At the Australian Grand Prix, Massa was appointed a director of the Grand Prix Drivers' Association. He qualified fifth and finished third in the race, later commenting that it had been an unusually good start to the season for him. Massa then went onto score five further points finishes followed by three non-points scores. In June, Massa agreed to a contract extension until the end of the 2012 season.
At the 2010 German Grand Prix Ferrari were investigated for team orders as Massa took the race lead early, ahead of Alonso. During the race these positions were maintained until Massa received instructions from Ferrari engineer Rob Smedley, saying "Fernando is faster than you. Can you confirm you understood that message?". Shortly afterwards, on lap 49, Massa allowed Alonso to take the lead, and consequently to win the race. Smedley then added after the pass 'Ok mate good lad, stick with him now, sorry.' Massa achieved two further podiums at Italy and Korea to finish sixth in the Drivers' Championship with 144 points.
During the 2011 season Massa was comprehensively outclassed by his team mate, scoring less than 50 percent of Alonso 's points tally. He failed to make the podium in his tenth year in F1, during which he maked his 100th start for Ferrari.
During 2012 Massa struggled to get to grips with Ferrari's tricky F2012 and was comprehensively outclassed by his team mate Alonso over the first half of season,and rarely made it into Q3. He slowly improved before scoring his first podium since 2010 in Japan and adding another in Brazil . He retained his seat for 2013 .
Massa's helmet was blue with a fluorescent yellow X on both sides and a yellow triangle that coverd the upper helmet with the top section coloured with a green diamonds. In 2006 a white ring was added around the top for sponsors. In 2007 the tips of the fluorescent yellow X were more ramified and the top traingle was filled with a green gradient. In 2008 the yellow X was given a greener hue.
In 2011 the white sponsorship ring was removed and the top section was extended downwards. For his 100th race with Ferrari at the 2011 Brazilian Grand Prix, Massa sported a chrome and gold prancing horse on the top with a further 100 horses representing the races Massa contested with Ferrari. The design also featured gold, blue and green spreading out over the helmet.
Complete Formula One resultsEdit
(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)