For the second time Felipe Massa has completed his final race in Formula 1 but this time it will stick as he thanks fans and the sport for his time there.

Massa retired at the end of the 2016 season having reached the decision with Williams mid-season only to pull off a dramatic U-turn following Nico Rosberg's shock retirement. The Brazilian driver was called back to partner rookie Lance Stroll at the team after Valtteri Bottas was moved to Mercedes.

Finishing 10th in Abu Dhabi to bring home a final point-scoring finish, Massa did donuts on the track and parked his car up with the podium-finishers, thanking the fans and crowd for their support.

Asked what he would miss in F1 he said: “It was really a great pleasure, to be here 16 years. I am so lucky to have passed through all this for such a long time - racing against great teams, the best drivers in the world.

“So thank you, all of you that was following me, supporting me all this time, my family - and I'm very lucky to have all of this in my life. It was a great pleasure.”

Just like the Brazilian’s final home race Massa tangled with Fernando Alonso all race and says it was the best way to end his career in F1.

“I have to say the race was good today, I was fighting from the beginning to the end.”

Massa's long-time engineer, Rob Smedley, said that it was the right moment for him to leave the series, “I think this is now definitely, undoubtedly the time to retire from Formula 1 because he's retiring still - the car's not anywhere near where we need it to be but he's still at the top of his game in that car. And I'm not sure that we would get many more points with that car.

Smedley said that Massa was owed a race win - and had proved that he finished his career as competitive as he had ever been during his F1 career.

“He's been unlucky, he should've won a race this year in Azerbaijan - and he's one of the genuine ones that should've won a race cos everybody should have won a race but he genuinely, really should've won that race.

“Weekend in, weekend out we rely on him and to have a driver like that, who is loved by the team, who is loved by the paddock and who's still at the top of his game ...there's no better way to go out.”

 

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