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F1 Chinese GP: Massa hopeful he won’t have more tyre failures

Felipe Massa: I did long runs and did many laps [in FP2] and didn't have the problem again, so I think we found it and understood it.
Felipe Massa says he is hopeful Williams won't have any more tyre failures during the Chinese Grand Prix this weekend.

The Brazilian suffered two dramatic left-rear delaminations during the opening session at the Shanghai International Circuit, the first pitching him into a spin before a second is believed to have left debris collected by Kevin Magnussen, who would suffer his own left-rear blow-out.

However with the team making modifications for FP2, he had no more dramas, finishing up 14th on the timesheets, 0.491s off team-mate Valtteri Bottas in P10.

“I did long runs and did many laps [in FP2] and didn't have the problem again, so I think we found it and understood it. That's the most important thing,” Massa underlined.

Despite that, however, he admitted it had not been an easy day: “Everything's OK now for the car to run without problems, so that's positive, but then the day was not very positive - we lost the first session and just ran in the second session and it was not really easy to understand the feeling on the car or the tyres.

“Degradation was pretty high for everybody. But we have another day and I hope we can be more competitive tomorrow. We need to work really hard to understand the tyres and try to be better.”

Asked if he had any concerns after the tyre failures, he added: “If you don't exactly know the problem then for sure it affects you because you have no idea if the tyre will blow or not. But when the team understands the problem, that's the most important thing. I trust the team and I'm just trying to push as hard as I can.”

As for why Bottas didn't have the same problem in the sister car, Massa was unsure why that was the case. “I don't know. I think maybe Valtteri was lucky with the red flag. Maybe it would have also happened on his car. But at least we found the problem.

"We made a modification on the wheel rims and we didn't have this problem anymore. We did many laps in the second one and that was what counts.”

by Rob Wilkins

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
15.04.2016 - Free Practice 1, Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38
15.04.2016 - Free Practice 1, Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38
14.04.2016 - Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38
Felipe Massa -  Williams Martini Racing

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