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Felipe Massa: & # 34; Michael is still a friend & # 34;

Felipe Massa
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F elipe Massa had a difficult time at the official Ferrari season start in Madonna di Campiglio. Despite his upcoming comeback, media interest recently revolved more around his new and old teammates. But Massa is not impressed by the headlines about Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso. He wants to impress with his performance on the track.

I'm better than ever

'Me I'm better than before, 'dictated the Brazilian to all those skeptics who fear that he might still suffer from the aftermath of his serious accident five months ago. 'The tests in F2007 were good. I finally want to start again. I am fully motivated. My eyes are 100 percent okay again. I have traveled to doctors in three different countries who have confirmed this to me.'

In the new season, Massa will also meet his old companion Michael Schumacher. 'Michael is still a friend,' explains the Brazilian. 'It was important to have him as a teammate to get to a higher level. But in the race we fight each other. Our friendship continues outside the track. It's strange to see him drive for another team. For every driver it is now particularly interesting to finish before Michael. '

The first opponent of a racing driver is known to be his own team-mate. Fernando Alonso will demand a lot from the Brazilian. However, the situation is not new. With Jacques Villeneuve, Michael Schumacher and Kimi Räikkönen, the Brazilian already had several world champions as a team-internal yardstick. 'When you drive at Ferrari, you know that you get strong team-mates. But you also learn from them and thereby improve yourself.'

Alonso should work with me

Massa asked the Spaniard to work together constructively. Then both would benefit in the end. There is no bad blood between the two Latinos. But that was not always the case: In 2007, the two really got into a fight at the Nürurgring. During an overtaking maneuver, Massa did not back off Alonso and touched the McLaren driver at the time. Although Alonso won the race, he reproached his Ferrari rival. When they exchanged words in Italian, the two threw strong swear words at each other. In the meantime, however, a peace pipe has been smoked:'We talked about the matter. Fernando apologized. That's the end of it for me,' said the Brazilian.

The 2008 season also caused controversy. In the end, Massa missed the title by one point. If Renault hadn't cheated in the Singapore race, the decision might have turned out differently. According to Massa, he spoke to both Nelson Piquet and Flavio Briatore about whether the race was flawed. Both assured him that the right things had happened. 'Nelson said that with a grin though.' Just a few months later, when Piquet revealed the truth, he knew why. At the time, Massa publicly demanded that Renault and Alonso be deprived of their victory.

Now, however, the focus should only be directed towards the front. 'We have to be competitive from the start of the season. Every point counts, as we learned in 2008.' So far, the collaboration with his new teammate has been going well. 'We have already talked a lot about the development of the new car. I've talked more about it with Fernando than I did with Kimi Räikkönen in three years.' He has meanwhile become a father and proudly showed pictures of little Felipinho in Madonna. He himself does not believe that the new father is slowing down because of concern for the offspring. 'Michael Schumacher also won world championships as a father. When I sit in the car, I don't remember that I have a family.' Felipe does not want to make the offspring his own successor. 'If he also wants to become a racing driver, then of course I'll support him. But I won't push him.'


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