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GP Week : Issue 172
F1 >>> NEWS Since the Italian Grand Prix in early September, rumours have been swirling that popular Brazilian racer Felipe Massa had extended his contract with Ferrari for another season. This week, the Scuderia confirmed that Massa would be with the Maranello team in 2013. “We are pleased to have extended our relationship with Felipe for a further year,” team principal Stefano Domenicali said. “He has been part of our family for over a decade and has shown – especially in this recent part of the season – that he is once again competitive at the highest level, which is what is expected of every driver who gets behind the wheel of a Ferrari. We have always supported Felipe, even in the most difficult moments of his career, and we are certain of his worth and are sure he will know how to repay the confidence this renewal proves we have in him.” After two troubled seasons, recent races have seen a definite upturn in performance from the beleaguered Massa, prompting many in the paddock to speculate that the Monza rumours were true. With a signed – if temporarily secretive – contract under his belt, it was argued, a relaxed Massa was delivering stronger performances. By the time the diminutive Paulista took to the podium in Suzuka, Massa’s contract extension was taken as fact, with the F1 world merely waiting for the official announcement. “I am very happy to have reached this agreement,” Massa said when his contract extension was confirmed by the team. “Ferrari is my racing family and throughout my entire time in Formula One, I have always driven cars powered by engines built in Maranello: I can’t see myself driving cars propelled by anything else! “First and foremost, I want to thank President [Luca di] Montezemolo and Stefano Domenicali, who had faith in me and who have always supported me, even at the most difficult moments. The team and also all the fans can rest assured that I will do all in my power to help the Scuderia reach the targets it sets itself each year.” In other Massa news, the Brazilian racer has had a kerb named after him at the Buddh International Circuit, home to next weekend’s Indian Grand Prix. At last year’s maiden race, Massa came a cropper at Turn 8 in both qualifying and the race, damaging his suspension in twin accidents. As a consequence, the kerbing at Turn 8 – which is one of several corners to have been widened ahead of this year’s grand prix – has been renamed the ‘Massa kerb’ by the Indian race organisers. FERRARI FUTURE SECURE FOR 2013 5 GPWEEK.com // 5 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: