Jean Alesi says if Felipe Massa goes back on his decision to quit F1 to return to Williams it will be a mistake for the Brazilian.
The former F1 race winner, who competed for Tyrrell, Ferrari, Benetton and Sauber, exited the sport at the end of the 2001 season after a 13-year career to go on to enjoy a successful DTM career with Mercedes.
Massa announced his decision to leave F1 at the end of 2016 at Monza but is reported to be ready to make a U-turn on the decision for Williams with Valtteri Bottas set to take up Nico Rosberg's race seat at Mercedes after the German driver made the shock announcement to retire just days after winning the 2016 F1 world title.
Alesi has cast doubt on Massa's expected decision to step up for Williams – who require a driver over the age of 25 for commercial reasons with title sponsor Martini – and fears it may not become the dream comeback for the Brazilian driver.
"Honestly to me this is a mistaken decision," Alesi said in Gazzetta dello Sport
. "Felipe has stopped, he's turned a page. And what if he discovers that the Williams isn't quick."
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Alesi has also reflected on Rosberg's surprise decision to retire and after his initial shock he has come to understand the 2016 world champions reasoning.
"To start with I thought the same as [Niki] Lauda. I was surprised and angry,” he said. “I didn't really get the logic of announcing your retirement the same week in which you won the title.
"But then I thought about it some more and I thought of Senna, of how he said he would drive for Williams for nothing and how hard he worked to make it happen and then he died. Perhaps Nico just didn't feel like racing any more."
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