17 April 2014
Chinese F1 Grand Prix: Massa: Less pressure at Williams
Felipe Massa says there is noticeably less pressure on him as a driver at Williams than there was at Ferrari
Felipe Massa says there is noticeably less pressure on him as a driver at Williams than there was at Ferrari.
After eight years with Ferrari, Massa switched teams over the winter and Williams currently sits just three points behind his old team in the constructors' championship. With Stefano Domenicali having resigned as Ferrari team principal at the start of the week, Massa was asked about the pressure at Maranello and said he was enjoying the lack of extra distractions that he used to face driving for a road car manufacturer.
“Definitely you are a bit more relaxed,” Massa said. “Here you have less pressure, so you can just concentrate on your job. By driving the car the job is the same; how you think, how you drive, the job you need to do is the same pressure. But I think outside is a little bit more relaxed.
“I'm pretty happy to be here at Williams, and I'm pretty happy to have this feeling as well. I was happy at Ferrari; I think I learned a lot at Ferrari but I think it was also very interesting to change and to have this feeling as well.”
While feeling under less pressure at the team, Massa believes Williams may have missed its best chance to finish on the podium. Asked if Bahrain was the best opportunity the team will have this season, Massa replied: “No, Australia!
“Maybe it was easier in Australia than in Bahrain, but in Australia I didn't race, so I definitely lost my big chance to be on the podium. So I really hope we're going to have another chance and that we can finish on the podium.”
And Massa feels the performance of Force India shows Williams how it needs to work on more than just outright pace to be competitive.
“Even in the past Force India was a good car for the tyres. The way they were in the past at some races they were doing less stops than other teams, so it's another year that they have a good car on tyres. It's not really a big surprise on performance because I think that we have a quick car as well, but on the tyres, yes.
“So it's something that is still an extra pressure for us; we need to push, we need to work to improve the car, to definitely make it quicker but also better in terms of tyre usage and everything, so it's a bigger push that we have inside the team. I hope that we can see an improvement and I hope that we will be able to fight with the Force Indias and also with the other teams as well.
“We're going to have some improvements with other teams, like Red Bull has a very good car, they have a lot of downforce but they're missing some other parts that for sure they are working to improve. As they are improving you are going to see they have a stronger car as well. So we can't relax, we need to work all the time because the developing from the first race to the last race is big and it's something we need to see in our team as well.”
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