Felipe Massa has admitted that running two sets of Bridgestone's supersoft tyres in the Monaco Grand Prix had been to no avail in his pursuit of the McLarens, but insisted that it was a gamble worth taking.

The Brazilian aside, only Takuma Sato ran two sets of the softer compound during the race - although many drivers were only one-stopping so were limited as to their choice. Massa, however, admitted that he had nothing to lose by going with the 'white-striped' rubber.

"When you see that you have nothing more to put into the car to fight, we just needed to fit another set of tyres and see if we could have a better and quicker car," he reasoned, having come home over a minute adrift of race winner Fernando Alonso, "But, in the end, it was similar so it was just the lack of pace we had today."

Fuelled similarly to Alonso, Massa's progress was limited early on by the heavier Hamilton, and then by traffic, negating some of the effect his tyre choice could have had.

"In the beginning, I don't think Lewis was very quick," the Brazilian noted, "I think he was a little bit heavier - I was just following him and Fernando was much quicker than us. That was really the key to the race for Fernando, because he managed to create a gap which was a little bit easier to keep after the pit-stop.

"I was just running behind Lewis for the first 15 laps without problems, and then I hit traffic, so it was also very difficult for me. I stayed a lot behind Trulli, a lot behind Davidson - I think Davidson was even penalised because of that. He was maybe ten laps in front of me, and really destroyed my race because [the McLarens] were just pulling away. But our car was slow today, so I am just happy to finish on the podium."

"Today, I think it is fair to say that McLaren Mercedes dominated," Bridgestone Motorsport head of track engineering operations Kees van de Grint, concluded, "Both the soft and supersoft compound Potenzas performed as expected, and we could clearly see an improvement in the usability of the supersoft as the track had rubbered-in.

"Both tyres were capable of any strategy, and it was interesting to see the different approaches of many drivers with one or two stops and using the compounds in different orders. Seven out of the top eight drivers - and three out of the top five - chassis did not race on Bridgestone tyres last season, clearly illustrating our tyres can be used to points scoring effect no matter whose tyres were used previously."

 

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